American supermarket giant Kroger has unveiled a partnership with vertical farm start-up Infarm.

Berlin-based Infarm offers innovative ‘modular’ vertical farming units that can be installed inside supermarket stores providing shoppers with fresh produce and negating the need for transportation.

In the UK and Europe, Infarm has partnered with Marks and Spencer, Metro, Casino and with Amazon’s grocery delivery service Amazon Fresh.

Kroger said Infarm vertical farming units would launch in two of its 15 Quality Food Centers stores due to open in Washington state.

Group vice president of fresh at Kroger, Suzy Monford, said: “Our partnership with Infarm allows us to innovate by combining ground-breaking in-store farming technology with our passion for fresh, local produce and ecological sourcing.”

An increasing number of retailers and grocers have become interested in vertical farming this year.

Ocado, the UK online grocer and a Kroger partner, invested £17m in developing indoor farming technology in June – creating a joint venture with 80 Acres Farms, a US vertical farming company, and Priva, a Dutch-based technology supplier, called Infinite Acres. It also bought a 58% stake in Scunthorpe-based Jones Food Company, the largest vertical farm operator in Europe.

Ikea’s venture capital arm, part of the wider Ingka Group, also led a $100m capital raising for AeroFarms, a US-based vertical farming group.