Northridge-area youth harvested the first batch of kale Thursday from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s new indoor farm inside a shipping container.

The farm is located at the Los Angeles Police Department’s Devonshire PALS center in Northridge, an organization that provides after-school enrichment programs to local children and teenagers. Children with the program on Thursday harvested the produce, which will be donated to local community-based organizations.

The farm is part of a two-year study led by the Electric Power Research Institution. DWP is one of about a dozen utilities participating in the study nationwide. The goal is to advance indoor food production, which officials say can reduce energy, water use and carbon emissions that come from transporting foods long distances.

“Los Angeles’ first-ever indoor pod farm proves that we can bring farming to urban areas in a sustainable way that doesn’t require huge amounts of land, energy or water,” Los Angeles City Councilman John Lee said.

“As we continue facing a drought of historic proportions, we have to look for alternative ways to bring fresh produce to our growing population while also limiting our usage of depleting resources like water. This container is one of the first steps in accomplishing that.”

Lee was joined by DWP Chief Sustainability Officer Nancy Sutley and LAPD Devonshire PALS Executive Director Edgar Sedano to celebrate the harvest.

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