Many of us do not give too much thought to where our food comes from, and this is not a failing on our part. The food industry has done a great job at distancing consumption from production, so our blind eye to it is understandable. Our meat and produce are all grown on far-off farms, sometimes even in other countries. A company called Plenty Inc. is looking to change all that using vertical farms located outside major cities.
Vertical Farms Will Increase Food Quality and Lower Costs
A company called Plenty Inc is hoping to disrupt the way that we think about the produce we eat. This Bay Area company has plans to bring incredibly high quality food to consumers at fractions of the cost associated with higher-end food. The way it plans on doing this is really rather intuitive: bring the farm to more populated areas. However, as those of you who live in a city or other densely populated area will know, there is just no room for a farm. So where will these farms be?
Plenty Inc will utilize vertical farms to make it feasible to have large growing operations close to consumers. The farms themselves will be state of the art and capable of producing large amounts of food.
Is This all Really Necessary?
Vertical farms will likely be increasingly popular solutions as population sizes increase and consumer tastes evolve toward fresher and cheaper food. Since these farms will be so close to consumers, the quality of the actual product at the time of consumption will be noticeably better. Any readers who are gardeners will be able to confirm that the fruits and vegetables they grow in their backyards are often far tastier than store-bought produce. By reducing the time in transit and shortening the gap between harvest and consumption, Plenty Inc’s vertical farms make food taste better.
While many might suppose this would rack up costs quickly – nightmarish images of some store’s pricing of organic kale are flooding my head even as I write this – the same factors that make the food taste better will drive down its cost. Much of these savings will derive from the significantly reduced cost of transporting these goods. Transportation costs can be staggeringly high at times, especially with needed refrigeration. While traditional farming and food sourcing benefit from things like subsidies and economies of scale to help keep their prices low, local vertical farms will likely win the price war because of simplified logistics, better products, and shorter grow times.
I would not be surprised if in the future more vertical farms near cities provide a large portion of the world’s produce. The concept just makes too much common – and economic – sense to ignore.