When you think of farming, visions of wide open spaces and fields probably populate in your mind. While technology has changed how agriculture is grown around the world, farming has remained basically the same process for thousands of years. In this image, farmers work the land, grow their crops, and harvest produce across a vast expanse of field and farmland. While this remains the norm, another method has begun making an impact in farming: vertical farming.
What is vertical farming?
Vertical farming is a modern method of farming that allows produce and medicine to be grown in layers and stacks, making it a great option for skyscrapers and urban areas that don’t have fields nearby to grow plants. This way of growing food allows plants to be grown up rather than out, creating a whole new level of sustainability for cities.
The advantages of using vertical farming rather than traditional farming are seemingly endless, especially in urban areas where food and resources must be shipped in. A cities resources could potentially allow the area to be primarily self-sufficient with produce, relying on the crops grown nearby rather than hundreds of miles away. The need for trucks to carry other freight carriers would be less necessary, eliminating the pollution that comes from shipping the resources.
Moreover, the need for large farming equipment that runs off of non-renewable energy sources would not be present with vertical farming.
In agriculture, there are peak seasons for nearly every kind of produce. Vertical farming within a controlled environment would eliminate the current system of waiting until climate conditions are right to plant and harvest produce. These vertical farms could thrive through the coldest of winters and driest of summers because they are in a carefully controlled area that would give them the best conditions for maximum growth.
They can be anywhere
Nearly every city in the world has abandoned buildings that are currently not being used for anything. These ineffectual buildings would be given new life with vertical farming and the larger the building, the more crops could potentially be grown there for citizens.
Vertical farming has received a lot of attention in recent years, but cities still have a long way to go in using this technique to allow their citizens access to fresh and local produce. The examples of how cities and companies have been able to enhance their food supply with this method continue to grow and show promise as we move forward in a more sustainable future.