Cool Friends: Viraj Puri of Gotham Greens

July 8, 2022

Meet Viraj, founder of Gotham Greens, a Brooklyn-based hydroponic farm network known for it’s rooftop greenhouses and delicious produce. We caught up with Viraj to learn how he created a garden in the middle of the concrete jungle.

How did you start your hydroponic Brooklyn-based farm, Gotham Greens?

Gotham Greens launched over a decade ago with a single urban rooftop greenhouse in Brooklyn and today, we operate one of the largest and most advanced networks of hydroponic greenhouses in North America. Our core mission at Gotham Greens is to reimagine how and where fresh food is grown – always putting people and the planet first. Our leafy greens and herbs are grown using hydroponic systems in 100% renewable electricity-powered greenhouses that use up to 95% less water and 97% less land than conventional farming. As a Certified B Corporation, Gotham Greens operates with a strong sense of environmental responsibility, consistently providing leafy greens and herbs that are trustworthy, non-GMO and pesticide-free, along with an expanding portfolio of fresh dressings and cooking sauces.

Since Gotham Greens was founded in New York City, a place where most people could never have imagined growing fresh produce on rooftops year-round, our brand name serves as a reminder of pushing the boundaries of what’s possible for a better, more sustainable (and delicious) food system.

What's your favorite part about the New York creative community?

Being an entrepreneur in New York challenges you to always hustle and be on the top of your game. Regardless of your field - whether it’s in the arts, fashion, business, sports or entertainment – one is challenged to excel. I continue to be inspired by the enormous talent, intellect and creativity in New York City, and I’m grateful that this city has embraced urban farming, the better food movement and particularly homegrown brands like Gotham Greens that are reimagining how and where fresh food can be grown.

What's inspiring you right now?

Two things stand out – the attention and urgency being felt by the climate crisis, and a post-covid resurgence of live music and festivals. Our recent collaboration with the Grateful Dead combines both of those. Earlier this spring, we launched our first music collaboration with the band – a gourmet medley salad aptly named Grateful Greens – and as a longtime Deadhead, it was a dream come true to combine a personal passion with my professional passion. I think what a lot of people might not know is that Grateful Dead fans really paved the way for the rise and popularity of plant-based eating. When I’ve been in the kitchen recently, I’ve been enjoying our cooking playlist curated by the legendary Grateful Dead archivist David Lemieux and mixing up my favorite summer salad.

Follow along:
@gothamgreens on Instagram

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