Students pivot their business and build a vertical farm in their parents’ cellar

In 2017, Lucas and Brieuc, two Belgian students started a business called Good Move. This company has now gone in a new direction. Until early 2020, Good Move produced cold-pressed, organic fruit and vegetable juices. But then the COVID-19 pandemic broke out and upset the apple cart.

“The European Parliament in Brussels used to take most of our juices. But many people started working from home. So, we lost a large part of our market,” says Lucas Vandierendock, one of the company’s founders. “That’s why we decided to switch gears completely and started doing vertical farming.”

“We started cultivating microgreens in a vertical farm. We built this in my parents’ cellar. We chose microgreens because we see this product in a lot of high-end restaurants. But not in supermarkets or local greengrocers. We wanted to change that. We started small and convinced a few stores to take our products. At that point we saw some early traction and decided to do a fundraising round to develop more broadly in Belgium. In the end, it raised much more than we expected it would. With this nice amount of money, we were able to increase production.”

Want to expand range
Good Move’s current assortment boasts four kinds of microgreens. “We have radish, mustard, purple radish, and kale in our range. In the coming months, we’re going to expand the range with seven more varieties,” explains Lucas. Shoppers can find Good Move’s microgreens in 35 stores in Belgium already. “We’ve been around for less than a year, but we’ve grown very quickly. That proves there’s a demand for microgreens. Our products are in various organic stores but also in a few independent Delhaize supermarkets. We hope to further expand our client base soon.”

Self-taught
“We’re still using my parents’ cellar at the moment. But, we’re looking for a new space. We have no room to expand here. And then we can get out of my mom’s hair,” laughs Lucas. The entrepreneurs taught themselves this cultivation method. “We watched a lot of videos, read studies, and did experiments. That’s how we learned how to farm in this way. And it’s going extremely well. The process is still far from automated and we still do a lot by hand. But automation is definitely on our agenda for the future.”

Good Move hopes to begin making juice again when the corona crisis is over. They’ll, however, outsource production, only doing sales. “Growing microgreens is far too much fun, and we definitely want to continue. Vertical farming is a very sustainable farming method. We want to invest our juice sales’ profits in our vertical farm. We also want to integrate our microgreens into the juices. They’re very healthy products with great flavors. They’ll make a great addition to our juices.” 

Lucas Vandierendonck
Good Move
Tel: +32 (0) 473 723 458
Email: lucas@goodmovefood.be
https://www.instagram.com/goodmovefood/ 


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