Hippo Harvest’s autonomous robots use machine learning to calculate the optimum fertilizer and water amounts needed by crops

Scarlett Evans, Assistant Editor, IoT World Today

February 19, 2024

1 Min Read
Hippo Harvest's autonomous robot in action
Amazon

Indoor farming startup Hippo Harvest has raised $21 million in its latest funding round, with backers including Amazon‘s Climate Pledge Fund.

Congruent Ventures, Hawthorne Food Ventures, and Energy Impact Partners also invested.

Hippo Harvest uses robots and automation to create “controlled greenhouses” where produce can be grown with less water, fertilizer and energy consumption than typical large-scale operations.

Hippo’s greenhouse system features a “closed-loop…direct-to-root fertilizer system”, autonomous robots and machine learning to distribute fertilizer, water, light and heat to plants on a microclimate basis, distributing these elements to plants only as and when they’re needed.

According to Hippo, the system enables a 55% decrease in fertilizer use and a 92% decrease in water use compared with other large-scale farming practices.

The company said it will use the latest funding to scale its greenhouse tech systems and expand its product offerings to target growing different kinds of vegetables – its current system is designed to grow lettuce.

“We’re excited by the opportunity to scale our production and reach more consumers with high-quality, sustainable produce,” said Eitan Marder-Eppstein, Hippo Harvest’s CEO.

“Our team’s work over the past 12 months demonstrates our ability to create modular, cost-effective growing systems that can be deployed across the country.”

Related:Amazon Home Robot Repurposed for Business Security

Hippo Harvest currently operates out of a greenhouse facility in Pescadero, California.

Amazon first invested in the company back in 2021 and currently sells Hippo’s own-grown salad mixes through Amazon Fresh. Local grocery chains in California, including Guss’s Community Market, Rebyl Food and Mar-val, also stock the startup's greens.

About the Author(s)

Scarlett Evans

Assistant Editor, IoT World Today

Scarlett Evans is the assistant editor for IoT World Today, with a particular focus on robotics and smart city technologies. Scarlett has previous experience in minerals and resources with Mine Australia, Mine Technology and Power Technology. She joined Informa in April 2022.

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