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BUSINESS - INTERVIEW

Interview with Mattias Lepp, Founder and CEO of Click and Grow, about Indoor Farming Solutions

Mars mission of NASA inspired a new idea for Mattias, and he decided to design his own eco-friendly indoor farm.

Friday, August 3, 2018

Mattias Lepp, Founder and CEO of Click and Grow

Mattias Lepp, Founder and CEO of Click and Grow

BUSINESS - INTERVIEW

by Beren Dere

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Click and Grow was founded by Mattias Lepp in 2009. Mars mission of NASA inspired a new idea for Mattias, and he decided to design his own eco-friendly indoor farm. In 2010, he entered Estonia’s Biggest Entrepreneurship Competition and won this award with his idea for a new plant cultivation technology. And the adventure of Click and Grow began. I asked Mattias Lepp, Founder and CEO of Click and Grow, in order to learn more about indoor farming and Click and Grow.

Click and Grow Smart Garden 9

Click and Grow Smart Garden 9

Mattias, before start to talking about Click and Grow, please tell us about your background and agricultural experiences. How did you first interested in Indoor Gardens? How did you decide to create Click and Grow?

It all started years ago when I was reading a NASA report about the Mars mission. The report included drawings of the devices allowing to grow produce in space. These pictures caught my interest and I decided to build my own device based on them. It worked out quite well and I grew some tomatoes in my room, in mid-winter! As I learned about the astonishing amount of fresh produce being wasted around the world, and a great number of people suffering from undernourishment at the same time, indoor gardening appeared to be a way to tackle many issues of the global food system at once.

Click and Grow Smart Garden 3

Click and Grow Smart Garden 3

Could you tell us about Click and Grow story?

I founded Click & Grow in 2009. In May 2010 I entered Estonia’s biggest entrepreneurship competition called “Ajujaht” with my idea for a new plant cultivation technology and won. In May 2013 we’ve launched a Kickstarter campaign for our Smart Herb Garden. With $625,000 raised and being placed among the top 50 launches on Kickstarter, we could definitely see that there was a huge demand for innovative home gardening products.

Click and Grow Smart Garden 3

Click and Grow Smart Garden 3

What did you want to change with Click and Grow idea?

One-third of food produced around the world, approximately two billion tonnes, is lost before it can be consumed and, at the same time, close to one billion people go undernourished. The food that is ultimately lost or wasted generates about 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions annually. Our technology enables growing plants hyper-locally and with zero effort, which can help to dramatically reduce food waste while giving more people access to the healthy food. Click & Grow is working towards making the most essential, fresh, vitamin-packed food available for everyone on this planet.

Click and Grow Smart Garden 9

Click and Grow Smart Garden 9

Please tell us about Smart Garden. What are the features of Smart Garden?

Smart Garden 9 gives everyone a chance to grow plants at home. Our Smart Soil makes sure plants get the optimal configuration of water, oxygen, and nutrients, while special LED grow lights provide them with the energy they need to thrive. All you need to do is click in the biodegradable plant capsules, fill the water tank and plug in the power cord! The starter kit includes mini tomatoes, basil, and green lettuce, to let you get the feel of the variety of plants you can effortlessly grow at home. While Smart Garden 9 allows you to grow 9 plants at a time, we also offer a smaller version, Smart Garden 3, which, as you may have guessed from the name, enables you to grow 3 plants simultaneously.

Click and Grow Wall Farm

Click and Grow Wall Farm

Could you tell us about Wall Farm which is suitable for users who want a larger planting area?

Our Wall Farm comes in 2 sizes and can grow up to 51 plants at a time. The technology involved makes sure plants always have enough water, light, and nutrients. Our Wall Farms are perfect for any home, office, restaurant, school or grocery store.

What are the differences between Smart Garden and Wall Farm? How can we decide which is right for us?

Our Smart Gardens and Wall Farms use the same technology, the main difference is that the Wall Farm is designed to help you grow more plants at a time with the same zero-effort approach for the customer. Just one example, as Smart Gardens are smaller, it is easy to keep tracks of the water level in them by just looking at the special floating indicator. The water tank in the Wall Farm is much bigger and has to be filled less often, but when it’s time to add the water, the flashing lights will remind you to do so.

We consider Smart Garden 3 and Smart Garden 9 as entry-level products and we’re happy to see that more and more people enjoy their first gardening experience and choose to grow food on a larger scale in Wall Farm.

Click and Grow Plant Pods

Click and Grow Plant Pods

How many different plants do you offer to indoor farmers? Are plant pods compatible with both of your gardens and your farms?

We offer 50 different plants, including fruits, vegetables, leafy greens and some decorative flowers. The user-logic of our gardens is similar to that of capsule coffee machines only instead of coffee pods, we offer Plant Pods which include the Smart Soil and the seeds, and they are compatible with all our gardens and farms.

Click and Grow Wall Farm

Click and Grow Wall Farm

How will indoor farming affect our lives in the near future?

There are some strong reasons behind the bloom of urban gardening and Grow-It-Yourself trend. People’s dietary habits have dramatically changed in the last 50 years. Our planetary health is worsening due to over pollution and the urban population is growing fast. Indoor gardening and farming are bringing back the lost knowledge of growing your own food to people living in the cities, which can fix many of food chain-related and environmental issues while helping people eat better.

Social media has become part of our life. How do you use social media for Click and Grow? How can our readers follow Click and Grow?

We have a very strong community of customers who are growing with Click & Grow and actively share their progress in our Facebook group and on other social channels. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, and if you have any questions on plants and growing with Click & Grow, please feel free to reach out to our gardening experts via Ask a Gardener forum! https://gardeners.clickandgrow.com

Click and Grow Smartfarm

Click and Grow Smartfarm

How can our readers buy Click and Grow products?

Our products are available at https://www.clickandgrow.com/, on Amazon, and at a number of retailers, including Best Buy Canada, Brookstone, and Target Open House.

What is next for Click and Grow?

We are working on some amazing new products, so please stay tuned to our updates on social media pages or subscribe to our newsletter at www.clickandgrow.com!

Thank you Mattias for this enjoyable interview.

For more information, please visit website of Click and Grow





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