MONTREAL, March 18, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- URBAN BARNS FOODS INC. (OTCQB:URBF) ("the Company" or "Urban Barns") is pleased to announce it has signed a mandate letter with a minority shareholder of the Company ("the Party") to identify and select local growing partners in each of the Republic of Tatarstan, part of the Russian Federation and Kazakhstan (together the "Territories") to offer food security, food safety and traceability of local grown vegetables, including lettuce, basil, watercress, mint, Swiss chard, cilantro and spinach, for local hotels and other food retailers (the "Project").

In accordance with the terms and provisions of the mandate letter, the Party will identify and select suitable licensing and joint venture partners or other business combinations in the said Territories. Following execution of a Memorandum of Understanding ("MOU") with selected partners, the Party will undertake to advise and guide the Company to a successful definitive and binding agreement resulting in the establishment of an Urban Barns growing facility in each of the Territories. It is anticipated that a new local entity will be set up in each of the Territories, a licensing agreement between the local entities and the Company along with a technical services agreement between the local entities and the Company for provision of technical services, training, support and know-how for an agreed upon monthly fee. The Party will have 6 month exclusivity on the Territories and unless otherwise agreed by both parties, the mandate will expire on September 13, 2013.

Dan Meikleham, Chairman of Urban Barns, commented, "We are very pleased to move ahead in Kazakhstan and Tatarstan. There is a tremendous need for fresh vegetable production in these areas of the world. The Urban Barns technology will enable both these Territories to produce fresh green leafy vegetables, 12 months per year for the very first time in a controlled environment. We expect to receive potential licensee partners from Kazakhstan to visit our Langley, B.C. facility within the next 60 days."

Richard Groome, President of Urban Barns Canada and Director of Strategic Marketing, added, "Our business model is to set up a strategic number of corporately owned growing facilities, while simultaneously identifying the countries and cities of the world that can best benefit from our Cubic Farming technology and subsequently selecting the appropriate licensing partners in each Territory. Our plan is to sell a territory license which will grant the licensee a geographic exclusive territory based on reaching and maintaining certain mutually agreed upon milestones. In addition to the technical services agreement, the Company will sell a stipulated number of "Cubic Farming" machines to each licensee followed by Urban Barns approved nutrients and seeds. The duration of each license will vary and likely be for an initial 5 year period with a 5 year renewal option based on performance."

About Urban Barns Foods Inc.

Urban Barns uses patent pending proprietary equipment to produce affordable vegetables in a secure and controlled indoor environment. By setting up facilities and growing locally, Urban Barns can focus on supplying any community, irrespective of the regional climate, effectively reducing shipping times and related spoilage costs. Urban Barns has the unique ability to scale and cater to the demands of all major communities. Our commitment to our consumers is reflected through our motto, "Purely Fresh, Naturally Tasty, and Completely Healthy". Urban Barns and and Cubic Farming are registered trademarks and the copyright of Urban Barns Foods Inc. All other company and product names mentioned are used only for identification purposes and may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.

Forward-Looking Statements:

Except for historical information contained herein, the matters set forth above may be forward-looking statements that involve certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those in the forward-looking statements. Words such as "anticipate", "believe", "estimate", "expect", "intend" and similar expressions, as they relate to Urban Barns or its management, identify forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are based on the current beliefs of management, as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to management. Actual results could differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements as a result of certain factors such as the level of business and consumer spending, the amount of sales of Urban Barns' products, the competitive environment within the industry, the ability of Urban Barns to continue to expand its operations, the level of costs incurred in connection with Urban Barns' expansion efforts, economic conditions in the industry and the financial strength of Urban Barns' customers and suppliers. Urban Barns does not undertake any obligation to update such forward-looking statements. Investors are also directed to consider all other risks and uncertainties.
CONTACT: Urban Barns Foods Inc.                  Dan Meikleham         403-807-8263                  Richard Groome         514-907-4989                  Media Contact: