S6E75: Eric Lang / ZipGrow’s - Fixing the Broken Food Model Through Education & Local Farms
Vertical Farming PodcastNovember 28, 2022x
01:03:4058.28 MB

S6E75: Eric Lang / ZipGrow’s - Fixing the Broken Food Model Through Education & Local Farms

Episode Summary

Eric Lang is the President and co-founder of ZipGrow, an organization that educates, equips, and empowers local farmers to grow better food for their communities using their patented ZipGrow technology. Today, Harry and Eric talk about the importance of educating the masses on the overall AgTech industry, why local is better than organic, and what ZipGrow is doing to fix the broken food model. Eric expounds on one of the latest offerings from ZipGrow, ZipPods, and advice he has for aspiring farmers looking to break into the industry.

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Key Takeaways

07:13 – Eric Lang joins the show to discuss his traditional farming background, founding multiple companies, what he learned from early leadership roles, and his mindset as he entered the AgTech space

13:37 – How Eric was able to apply his experience growing up on a dairy farm to AgTech

18:03 – Eric’s approach to building a world-class team and fostering an impactful culture

20:46 – Eric’s growth as a leader and the various skills necessary to become a successful farmer

29:15 – ZipGrow’s current offerings and the markets they are serving

36:29 – The inspiration behind ZipPods and branching out beyond leafy greens

43:59 – Advice Eric would give to those looking to enter the industry and where Eric sees the biggest growth opportunity

48:50 – Upcoming projects that ZipGrow is working on

55:23 – A tough question Eric has had to ask himself recently, what keeps him motivated, and a specific ask he has for his colleagues in the industry

1:03:38 – Harry thanks Eric for joining the show and lets listeners know where they can go to connect with him and learn more about ZipGrow

Tweetable Quotes

“One of the reasons I love being out in this area, even though we have maybe less of a choice of employees, when I find those other farm kids who are talented and skilled, they can and do do everything.” (17:28) (Eric)

“I think the reality is coming from traditional Ag, as much as I do absolutely believe in the product, the industry, changing the world, and feeding people, I also come from the perspective that it has to have an ROI (return on investment). You can’t just hope and feel good about doing something great and not ever actually make money.” (22:16) (Eric)

“We have everything from online hobby, to school and education, which is a big thing for us. We’re very committed to educating students and young people to make sure they understand and have an opportunity to get connected with the food they eat and understand where it comes from. But, of course, our bread and butter is still commercial farms.” (29:32) (Eric)

“I still absolutely believe that proper indoor warehouse farms are the most economical way of growing indoors that you can get. But there are certain situations where that doesn’t necessarily make sense.” (38:47) (Eric)

“A big focus for us is actually really getting into high-margin, high-volume crops, especially due to the nature of our actual equipment. It’s well suited to traceability. It’s completely clean and completely repeatable. We’re actually getting into strawberries, which we’ve been doing for six months and we’ve been killing it. But also, we’re getting into the next step, which is bio- pharmaceuticals and bio-cosmetics.” (40:27) (Eric)

Resources Mentioned

Eric’s LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/eric-lang-2235ab128/?originalSubdomain=ca

ZipGrow – https://zipgrow.com/

ZipGrow Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ZipGrowTM/

ZipGrow Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/zipgrowinc/

ZipGrow YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/c/Brightagrotech

ZipGrow LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/company/zipgrow-inc/

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