What You Need to Know About Vertical Farming
Vertical farming is the latest in a series of technologies that seek to establish and maintain sustainable agriculture. Using the latest advances in vertical lighting technology, allowing crops to prosper in extreme weather conditions and even in space.
Vertical farming lighting comprises a series of indoor solutions that are fully automated, can be used to control entire production lines, and are remotely adjusted to provide optimal conditions for cultivation.
Farmers who practice this cultivation technique have the value of a knowledge base that gives them 24-hour updates on humidity, temperature, and other vital factors. This information helps farmers identify when to adjust farming conditions for maximum results.
What You Need to Know
While the concept of vertical farming has been around for a long time, its practicality as a contributor to agricultural technology only dates back about ten years. Despite this, however, it has become a simplified and high-yielding practice.
Note also that many people who practice this kind of farming and most tech-savvy, a huge reason it is still unknown in the larger scheme of things. This lack of sensitization to consumers is another challenge.
Vertical farming is considered next-generation agriculture tech, and like other technologies such as food irradiation and GMOs, it is still unclear whether people will readily accept this Agritech.
Common Misconceptions about Vertical Farms
Consumer acceptance is one of the most challenging concerns for new technologies, especially in agricultural circles. While vertical farming is known to address several problems in cultivation and rectify shortfalls, many people are not convinced that this technology produces healthy crops.
People generally have a mistrust for anything that touches on food nanotechnology. It is for this reason that it will be difficult for new farms to integrate this technology. So what exactly is the reason for this mistrust?
High Yield Equals Low-Quality Outgrowth
According to a study by researchers from The University of Illinois, vertical farms produced up to 100x more than field farming. However, when consumers put a price tag on the produce, they tagged field farmed harvest higher. The assumption here is that more yield automatically meant low quality and, hence lower pricing.
In principle, consumers still have no idea how vertical farms work and the production costs.
Vertical Farming is Less Natural Compared to Field Farming.
Consumers are still having a hard time accepting that vertical farms are a solution for several environmental problems and will eventually become the best way to increase yield in the future. Many of these consumers are attached to conventional farming techniques, viewing vertical farms as an unnatural process with inferior quality.
There is hope, however, as more people get educated on the perks of this type of farming and how it will improve future practices. While it is still in its initial stages of production, vertical farming has shown plenty of promise by lowering production costs and increasing yield simultaneously.
This farming technique is cost effective and has a much higher outgrowth compared to contemporary farming techniques.
Critical Aspects of Vertical Farming Lighting
The reason there is mistrust in the results of vertical farming is that most people are unfamiliar with the principles and practices of this Agritech. A lot goes into providing the perfect conditions on a vertical farm, one of which is lighting. Here is a breakdown of how vertical farmers use light to facilitate and provide the ideal conditions for high yield.
Unlike conventional farming, where natural light is the primary energy source, vertical farm lighting is artificial and adjustable. Farmers here are privy to a knowledge base that monitors and regulates light intensity, time of exposure, and angle of entry. This manipulation allows crops to receive the optimum conditions necessary for a good yield.
Note that light in this context also affects other development processes, such as tissue growth. Tissue growth is a sensitive phase, as even the slightest increase in heat will cause tissue death. For this reason, vertical farm lighting uses food nanotechnology to establish the optimum conditions necessary for healthy plant growth and relays this knowledge base to farmers.
Other lighting elements such as color are relevant here, as different plants react to varying triggers. Note that vertical farm lighting consists mainly of synthesized UV light. The value of this synthesis is that it is adjusted based on plant requirements and environmental needs. Vertical farming gives you total control over the production process and creates the conditions for healthy growth.
Vertical farm lighting also gives you the rare ability to control the intensity of light. According to Professor Leo Marcelis from Wageningen University, higher light intensity improves vitamin C synthesis and gives your product a longer shelf life after harvest. Produce such as lettuce farmed under intense light stayed fresh up to 2 weeks after harvest! This deduction shows just how critical proper lighting can be and how it can increase yield longevity.
In conclusion, light may be the most crucial part of the equation, but it cannot work alone. Vertical farming requires an exact blend of proper practices, including the duration of light exposure and other well-structured environmental systems. A vertical farm is, by definition, a kind of micro-climate that merges everything from atmospheric airflow, humidity control, and other fundamental factors such as C02 intake.
Although it is a time-intensive process, vertical farming provides an alternative technique to maximize yield and increase crop longevity. The aim is that plants will stay fresh for much longer, provide better nutritional value and improve quality of life. Vertical farming is the beginning of a system of sustainable agricultural technologies that will hopefully improve farming practices for future generations.
Vertical farm lighting has provided an effective way for new-generation farmers to manipulate light intensity, direction, duration, and quality to achieve the best results in crop science. This feature has made it possible for modern farmers to increase yield and produce healthy and durable plant life. While vertical farming is still not a favored practice, it is evident that more people are hopeful that it is a viable solution for the future.