Nikki Fried gives root to new urban farming partnership in St. Pete
Shannon O’Malley, owner of Brick Street Farms. Image via Brick Street Farms.

brick street
Brick Street Farm is also the only female-founded and led company in the vertical farming industry.

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, joined by Tampa Mayor Jane Castor and St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman, announced a new urban farming partnership Thursday with two Tampa Bay organizations. 

The Commissioner welcomed a new partnership between St. Pete-based Brick Street Farms and Tampa’s Lykes Brothers Inc.

“This will help both Tampa and St. Petersburg and the whole Tampa Bay region over and over and over again,” Fried said Thursday. “This is a perfect example of how government is helping facilitate business development, while serving the greater good in our communities.”

Lykes Brothers, a family-owned agri-business, is making a significant investment into Brick Street Farms, a sustainable farming hub that houses an indoor, hydroponic farm. 

“This opportunity with Brick Street Farms brings together all the things we value, just in a more compact footprint than we’re used to,” said Lykes Brothers Vice President Mallory Lykes Dimmitt. 

The two organizations first connected at the Florida-Israel Agricultural Innovation Summit, which led to their eventual partnership. Brick Street Farms plans to expand through the help of the partnership, planting Brick Street Farm hubs throughout Tampa Bay and eventually across urban centers across the East Coast. 

The hubs are self-contained, environmentally sustainable shipping containers that grow between 16 and 20 acres of farmland on 1/3 acre lots. The centers, which are climate controlled and minimize water usage, provide on-site farming and retail shopping. 

The company will begin its expansion by opening two hubs in Tampa Bay — one in the St. Pete Warehouse Arts District, which will open in late 2021, and another in Tampa, which will open in early 2022. 

“What an incredible approach this is, and it quickly will become a best practice worldwide, because it really encompasses the full circle,” Castor said. “Any question that you have, any problem that our community faces, this approach solves that.”

Brick Street Farm is also the only women-founded and led company in the vertical farming industry, Kriseman noted. 

“It’s really a such an amazing opportunity for this community, for here in St Pete and for Tampa Bay, and I know that the vision is gonna continue to get carried throughout the entire state,” Fried said. “It really will inspire so many people across our entire state to think outside the box, literally.”

Kelly Hayes

Kelly Hayes studied journalism and political science at the University of Florida. Kelly was born and raised in Tampa Bay. A recent graduate, she enjoys government and legal reporting. She has experience covering the Florida Legislature as well as local government, and is a proud Alligator alum. You can reach Kelly at [email protected]


3 comments

  • zhombre

    May 20, 2021 at 1:35 pm

    Has Nikki Fried ever actually been on a farm in her life? Except, possibly, for a marijuana farm. I believe was counsel for some growers at one time.

    • blacklab007

      May 24, 2021 at 2:30 pm

      wow i wish she was more like Ron DeSantis as he really never has any conflicts of interests or political corruption. I think all diseases are political. disregard for public health goes hand in hand with pardons for those during height of pandemic disobeyed public laws. at least just comment on the article dude

  • Edward Lyle

    May 20, 2021 at 5:19 pm

    The only farming Nikki Weed is interested in is the cannabis production she profits from. The question remains; “When will Nikki Weed be formally investigated for her clear and present Conflicts of Interest and potential acts of Public Corruption?”

Comments are closed.


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