Otherwise known as ‘Vertical farms’, this agricultural method is on its way to taking the world by storm.
The idea of urban farming is not a new one. In fact, it had been proposed in 1984 to convert abandoned warehouses into modern, hydroponic farms. In the following years, city farming slowly sprouted in the form of ‘community gardens’ ranging from both entrepreneurs and small scale local companies.
If you have been keeping up to environmental news, you’ve probably already discovered the benefits of local food production. Closer farms means less fuel waste in transport and storage. It would be far more convenient for food to be accessible from somewhere close to the city rather than being shipped in from abroad.
This is where urban farming becomes an answer to both economists and environmentalists. Recent technology, aeroponic systems, allow for a great deal of flexibility and efficiency.
Environments are entirely under your control. There would be no need for pesky pesticides or chemicals or soil replacement. Everything would operate through stackable modules, where mist is provided straight to the roots of plants to maximize nutrient, H20 and oxygen uptake. LED lights would last longer, as well as save on energy consumption. Module designs are easy to stack up and place around small indoor areas. Depending on the entrepreneur or company’s requirements, aeroponic systems still appears to be the most beneficial method of city farming. One would be able to reproduce the same quality products from normal soil-based farms, and perhaps provide an even better result.
But surely growing plants without natural soil or sunlight is ludicrous, right?
The idea seems unusual and far-fetched to many, but surprisingly enough an Aeroponic system can do better than nature’s soil and sunlight. The science behind this is that by removing soil and providing a nutrient mist to the root, the root has a far more efficient uptake on nutrients and oxygen. This increases the potential of a larger yield. To put it in another way, imagine trying to sip water through a small straw when you could simply drink a cup of water itself. Furthermore, this avoids a lot of soil-destruction from harsh farming techniques which damage the land permanently.
When it comes to using either Sunlight or LED, the latter is probably a more efficient choice. After all, we cannot control when the sun shines. Crops are frequently ruined by uncertain weather conditions, whereas an LED light assures you of a consistent, controllable environment all year around.
With an increasing demand for sustainable food, and the population escalating each year, urban farming is becoming a choice method more than ever. Aeroponic farms can be owned by any eco-enthusiast or gardener. It is also particularly ideal for entrepreneurs in the organic farm business wishing to expand their products and increase their efficiency. The modules designed for growing plants are often stackable, hence the name ‘vertical farms’, and easy to fit within indoor spaces.
So although urban farming is still a fairly recent area of exploration, it is undoubtedly becoming one of the most prominent farming innovations of today’s society. Perhaps even one day in the future, entire buildings will be dedicated to aeroponic farming systems.