S4E40: Shannon O'Malley - Creating Your Neighborhood Farm
Vertical Farming PodcastSeptember 10, 2021x
00:57:3152.69 MB

S4E40: Shannon O'Malley - Creating Your Neighborhood Farm

Episode Summary

Join Harry Duran, host of Vertical Farming Podcast, as he welcomes to the show, co- founder & CEO at Brick Street Farms, Shannon O’Malley. Brick Street Farms is a hydroponic, indoor city farm that grows leafy greens year-round in technology based, climate controlled environments. Their mission is to grow the most nutritious produce at the heart of consumption.

Today, Harry and Shannon talk about how Shannon became an ‘accidental co-founder’ within the Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) industry. Shannon discusses the key differentiating factor of Brick Street Farms and shares some of the amazing work they are doing to educate society on this growing segment. Harry and Shannon talk about the recent extreme weather, most notably the deep freeze in Texas, and how more of these climactic events are impacting how our food is grown, harvested and delivered to us. Finally, Shannon speaks to the initiatives Brick Street Farms is involved with, including combatting food deserts.

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Key Takeaways

  • 02:58 – Harry welcomes to the show Shannon O’Malley, who joins the show to discuss her engineering background and her passion for building and creating
  • 13:39 – An accidental co-founder
  • 17:18 – Extreme weather and vertical farming
  • 21:11 – Brick Street Farms’ origin story and a key differentiating factor about them
  • 25:51 – An amazing reaction from the community
  • 27:32 – Educating the masses on career opportunities within the vertical farming industry
  • 32:30 – Challenges that the Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) industry faces, including contamination
  • 35:57 – Taking on a leadership role at Brick Street Farms and facing new challenges such as COVID-19
  • 41:59 – Connecting with other CEA companies
  • 44:08 – What’s next for Brick Street Farms as the grow and expand their team and organization
  • 51:09 – Harry thanks Shannon for joining the show and let’s listeners know where they can learn more about Brick Street Farms and connect with Shannon

Tweetable Quotes

“I definitely think my passion for science and engineering laid the foundation for me today to at least have the curiosity to try.” (13:08) (Shannon)

“A key differentiating factor for Brick Street Farms is that our focus is wholesale hospitality and direct-to-consumer and not mass distribution through grocery stores or food supply companies.” (22:29) (Shannon)

“We would not have been able to get where we are today if we didn’t have the amazing reaction and support of our community.” (26:25) (Shannon)

“We like to use a phrase called, ‘Advanced Simplicity.’ We build our machines so that anyone can operate them because you have to be able to build this labor force and this workforce. And we get folks from all walks of life, former delivery drivers and warehouse workers to plumbers to science students. And so we want people to be able to come in and be effective right away.” (30:58) (Shannon)

“Brick Street Farms is only as successful as we build our Thrive Containers. And Thrive Containers is our manufacturing brand. Brick Street Farms can only be as successful as good of a machine that we build. So, we work to build a machine with highest ROI with the lowest inputs.” (43:00) (Shannon)

“We’re focused on expanding our brand, our marketing, our consumer outreach and governmental affairs.” (46:03) (Shannon)

Links Mentioned

Shannon’s LinkedIn

Brick Street Farms Website

Brick Street Farms Twitter

Brick Street Farms Instagram

Brick Street Farms Facebook

Thrive Containers Website

Sponsor Info:

Cultivatd Website

Cultivatd Instagram

Cultivatd’s Twitter

Cultivatd’s Facebook


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