Overpopulation, climate change, water scarcity, and the lack of ample and arable space near urban communities call for innovative and also radical solutions when it comes to farming. Continuing the spraying of pesticides on open fields, using massive amounts of water for irrigation, and cultivating genetically-engineered crops is clearly not sustainable anymore, so a fundamentally different approach is required.
Bowery Farming in New Jersey has created a high-tech indoor vertical farm unit to demonstrate that things can grow in a different way, and also that this could work on a bigger scale.
What Bowery Farming does is to use basil, arugula, and crispy leaf seeds that haven’t been GMOed to withstand droughts or pests, so the basis for an amazing flavor is there. They then stack the crops vertically to maximize space utilization, so a small warehouse can grow as much as a large farm. Weather changes, pollutants, and pests aren’t an issue, as everything is protected indoors and accessible through a disinfecting chamber.
Produce grows in these farms all year round thanks to the fixtures that imitate the sunlight spectrum, using no pesticides or other harmful chemicals, and needing between 5% to 10% of the water that would be required for growing the same amount of greens in a traditional farm setting.
Once the vegetables are ready for consumption, they’re packed and pushed to nearby stores or shipped directly to customers, so the time they need to reach people’s tables is significantly shorter.
This means that no lorries will have to transport the produce from points that are hundreds of miles away from the cities, putting them through multiple condition-changing cycles that risk their nutrients, and having to cut them while still not mature enough to avoid having spoiled batches.
For all these reasons combined, the flavor and aroma of the end product cannot be compared, even if everything else is put aside.