As a financial executive, Darin Pastor seeks out and develops innovations that have the potential to benefit his investment portfolio. Recently, Darin Pastor sought a patent for technology that has important implications for vertical farming. What are some key benefits of this type of farming?
One benefit of vertical farming is its efficiency. AeroFarm, a testing ground for the vertical farming method, reports crop maturity in about half the time it takes a typical farm. Furthermore, because this method offers greater environmental control, consumers don’t need to wait until the right season for their favorite foods to become available.
It’s a possible solution for so-called food deserts. The larger a city is, the more difficult it is to bring fresh food to its centers. This leaves city dwellers, especially those with lower incomes, reliant on shelf-stable, pre-packaged, and processed foods rather than nutritious, fresh fruits and veggies. One source notes that by 2050, nearly 80 percent of the earth’s population will reside in urban areas. If farms can be brought to urban centers, the problem of food deserts might just be eradicated.
Vertical farming has the potential to make food cheaper, since utilizing urban land to grow food in densely populated areas eliminates much of the need for transportation produce across the country. Furthermore, the engineered efficiency of these farms maximizes land use, reduces water consumption, and minimizes the need for harmful fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides. All these factors lead to lower overhead for producers, and thus lower prices for consumers.