The funding will be used by Iron Ox to expand its presence outside of California, offering more fresh, clean and healthy food to consumers

Iron Ox

A robot at work at Iron Ox’s greenhouse farm. (Credit: Iron Ox/Business Wire.)

Iron Ox, a developer of hybrid robotic greenhouses, has secured $20m in Series B funding to support its mission to produce fresh food.

Simultaneously, Iron Ox has also announced the opening of its first farm in Gilroy, California. The new farm is expected to supply fresh produce across the state to select restaurants and retailers such as Bianchinis and Whole Foods.

The firm plans to expand across the nation next year, bringing more fresh, clean and healthy food to consumers outside of California.

The $20m funding round was led by a collection of Family Offices and Pathbreaker Ventures, who had also led the pre-seed funding in the firm four years ago.

Other investors who participated in the round included Crosslink Capital, Amplify Partners, ENIAC Ventures, R7 Partners, Tuesday Ventures, At One Ventures and Y Combinator.

Iron Ox is supported by plant scientists, engineers, greenhouse operators

Iron Ox has developed hybrid robotic greenhouses to support a wide range of freshly grown vegetables. Using energy-efficient and flexible production techniques, the firm pushed traditional farm automation and optimisation to provide its customers with a one-stop-shop for fresh produce.

Iron Ox is supported by a team of plant scientists, engineers, greenhouse operators and roboticists who want to address the issue of sustainable food production.

Iron Ox CEO and co-founder Brandon Alexander said: “We have made it our mission to address food security by developing autonomous greenhouses that grow a variety of local and consistently delicious food for everyone.

“Today, we’re thrilled to announce the successful operation of our Gilroy farm as well as our consumer brand, and our plans to complete additional sunlight-enabled, out-of-state facilities in 2021.

“As our growing network expands, so too will our partnerships and distribution channels, which will enable us to delight even more customers.”

Pathbreaker Ventures founder and managing partner Ryan Gembala said: “Companies like Iron Ox show us what’s possible when a group of incredibly talented, cross-industry professionals are assembled to tackle a pressing global problem.

“Robotics and artificial intelligence can provide solutions to lower the cost of fresh, local produce while increasing its quality, cleanliness and availability to more communities. We’re excited to be part of Iron Ox’s journey in the years to come.”