Sel­fridges plans to sell kale and spring greens grown on ‘ver­ti­cal farm unit’ in­side its store

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Special Report: Feeding The Nation - Laura Onita By

SHOP­PERS vis­it­ing Sel­fridges will soon be able to buy kale and spring greens grown in-store.

The depart­ment store chain has in­stalled a ver­ti­cal farm unit where it will grow scar­let kale, nero di Toscana kale and golden purslane, along­side other greens.

It is part of Sel­fridge’s Project Earth, a five-year sus­tain­abil­ity plan un­der boss Anne Pitcher which also in­cludes a cloth­ing hire ser­vice and a se­cond­hand fash­ion shop.

Last month, strug­gling peer John Lewis said it was dou­bling down on ser­vices such as fur­ni­ture hire, and even open­ing gar­den cen­tres, to shore up rev­enues. Sel­fridges worked with

In­farm, a Berlin-based busi­ness, to in­stall a farm sim­i­lar to one fit­ted at Marks & Spencer’s store in Clapham, south Lon­don.

It has re­cently cut 450 jobs af­ter lock­down af­fected sales. Re­cov­ery is slow, as a sig­nif­i­cant slice of rev­enue at its flag­ship store in Lon­don comes from over­seas and do­mes­tic tourists.

Sel­fridges has also teamed up with HURR, an on­line fash­ion rental plat­form, to of­fer 100 items from more than 40 fash­ion brands for hire for up to 20 days at a time.

John Lewis said it was work­ing with Fat Llama this week to test its fur­ni­ture rental ser­vice.

Ms Pitcher told the Guardian: “I think we’ve all changed and peo­ple will care not only about how you do busi­ness, but how you place peo­ple and planet at the heart of your think­ing. So many busi­nesses are so far away from that.”

Her re­marks echo the views of Dame Sharon White at John Lewis. She told staff last month that its pur­pose should be mod­ern, rel­e­vant and in­spir­ing.

“The themes of tack­ling in­equal­ity, of well-be­ing, and sus­tain­able liv­ing will be at its core,” she added.

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