Empowering You to Grow Food Year-Round
Jen & Matt have been friends for 20 years. They founded Green Thumb Technology together in 2015.
Jen is the green thumb of Green Thumb Technology. While researching how to make her patio garden vertical, she came across living walls (hydroponic, vertical gardens using house plants). It has been her dream to own a business that contributes to healthier people & planet, and Green Thumb Technology is the perfect fit!
Having grown up in a single-parent household with her mom and brother, she remembers how a few times their cupboards and fridge were empty. It is her vision to line food banks and low income family homes with VeggieWalls, donating a percentage of profits to such causes as this, as well as First Nations and remote Communities across Canada that have challenging food access and food security problems.
Jen has also had family members pass away from cancer, and believes that eating food you grow yourself, along with excersing in nature, are two of the best things we can do for our health. The fresher the food, the more we benefit from its rich nutrients. Plants start to lose their nutrient value once picked.
As a nature-lover, spending all her spare time outside, Jen is an advocate for caring for our environment by reducing our impact on the planet. The VeggieWall decreases the need to ship food, the avg NA diet travels 1500 miles. Agriculture, and clearing of land associated with it, contributes to 30% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Climate change, droughts, excessive water use, nutrient loss due to genetic modifications, urban densification, and pesticides.... It is time to change our food system and make it healthier for us and the planet! Jen hopes Green Thumb Technology will inspire more people to grow their own food, so we can live happier, healthier lives and reduce our ecological footprint.
Inspired, Jen started to research greenhouses that grow food with hydroponics. She contacted Matt and the two began sketching & prototyping. The rest is history!
Matt has many talents: a musician who has produced his own records and recording studio, to video, photography, and custom home renovations. He's also a great cook, a foodie, and husband. Matt loves to use fresh herbs, and although he has never grown food before, he found it easy with the VeggieWall in his basement suite. Rather than spending money on expensive herbs that go to waste before he can use them, now he can pick fresh herbs to add to his dishes as he needs them! Matt uses his talents in art and construction to build many prototypes and is always inventing new products.
Ashling - Sales
Ashling’s enthusiastic love for vegetables started with Papa’s garden at the summer cottage in the Algonquins of Ontario. Nothing like fresh Peas please! Her love for nature continued in her studies. Her are a few of her accolades:
- Part of the Envirothon team that went on to a National competition
- Junior Stewardship Ranger for the Ministry of Natural Resources(MNR)
- Fleming College of Natural Resources
- National Scholarship, Garfield Weston Merit Scholarship, based on character and community service.
- Graduated with an Ecosystem Management Technician diploma.
- Women in Natural Resources Award
- And we shouldn’t leave out: she won the Social Butterfly Award at her high school prom. When you meet her, you will know why!
Working as an Ontario Fire Ranger for the MNR, brought her out west for the first time to see the Rockies and she knew where she was headed next! Alberta bound the fall after graduation, she took her time across Canada and WWOOFed along the way! This westward journey included:
- WWOFing (Willing Workers On Organic Farms).
- Co-creating multiple events in the magical community of dance, art and inspiration.
- Working in the Natural Health industry that lead to the Community Garden Network of Edmonton.
- Red Deer, where she first found Yoga.
- Board of directors for Re-Think Red Deer
- Worked as a Gardener/Arborist, Tree Hazard Assessor and Community Support worker.
BC has always been in her heart and after a decade in AB it was time to be in BC! A short stay in the Koots and a friend with a job offer to work for a sustainable clothing company later, Squamish it was!
- Sales with Sustainable Clothing company - 3 years of Managing the studio and rocking the festivals in the summers, organization, sales and customer service is her natural way.
- She found her Forrest yoga community and is currently doing her second 200RYT.
- Volunteers at Squamish Elementary and Helping Hands and has taken an interest in death.
- Hosting Death Cafes is one of her more recent interests.
- She also loves to swim and hike and practice Vipassana meditation.
Ashling is full of stoke for Green Thumb Technology, and looking forward to a long and rad future full of peace happiness and true liberation!
Green Thumb Technology has been fortunate to have formed partnerships with Misty West Design and Engineering, The National Research Council of Canada, and Emily Carr University. Thanks to Misty West Design and Engineering Services for your expertise in manufacturing, design, and electronic engineering. Thank you to the National Research Council of Canada and Emily Carr University for your help in taking our design to manufacturing.