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Techno Farm – 30,000 Heads of Lettuce a Day

Touch the Soil News #1152 (Feature photo – A Head of Lettuce – CCA SA 3.0 Unported ) The nation of Japan, constrained on an Island with minimal farmland is being forced to re-invent the cultivation of Food. Spread Co., LTD – which has been in the vertical farm business for 10 years has studied and evolved the model of indoor vertical farming. Using technology, robots and less expensive lighting, the company currently produces 21,000 heads of lettuce every day for Japanese grocery stores. Spread Co., LTD is now building a larger and more efficient vertical farm – the largest in the world. Called the Techno Farm, the new facility…

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Las Vegas – Home to One of the World’s Largest Indoor Farms

Touch the Soil News #1072 (Feature photo – Las Vegas – CCA 2.0 Generic) Chinese Firm Sananbio just opened one of the largest indoor farms in the world. Called the Oasis Biotech, the 215,000 square foot facility embraces vertical trays and high-tech lighting, water recycling and soil-less growing. Located in Las Vegas, the facility even has air conditioning to keep the growing environment optimal for the plants. The indoor farm is touted to be able to provide 9,500 servings of leafy green salads a day. According to the Company ( https://oasisbiotech.com/ ) they have 17 varieties / mixes of greens that they already grow. Plans are to expand into strawberries…

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The Smart Garden 9

Touch the Soil News #934 (Feature photo – The Smart Garden 9 – photo courtesy of Click and Grow) The Finnish company – Click and Grow – has invented a new indoor food-growing appliance. It is the latest innovation that self-waters the plants. Plants come in biodegradable plant capsules. Simply pop in the capsules, add water and plug in. The handle allows you to move it anywhere you want in the house. The Smart Garden 9 sells for $199.95 and ships to the U.S. for $9.95. The basic kit includes 9 plant capsules – tomatoes, lettuce and basil. You can order from the company directly at: https://www.clickandgrow.com/ Want More? -…

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Should You Get into Indoor Farming?

Touch the Soil News #906 (Feature photo –- CCA SA 3.0 Unported) That is a hard question. The company Agrilyst recently compiled insights from 150 indoor farmers about their operations, priorities and perspectives on various technologies. Interestingly they said that container farms (retrofitted freight containers) were the most overhyped. Other interesting results were that 73 of indoor vertical farms were not profitable. On the more traditional front, 67 percent of glass or poly greenhouses were profitable. You can read the entire report at the following link: https://www.agrilyst.com/stateofindoorfarming2017/#firstSection Want More? – Sign up below Special Deals Ahead…Sign up!

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Farming in the Kitchen

Touch the Soil News #763 (photo courtesy of GrowChef) Across the Atlantic in Eastern Europe is the small nation of Estonia. It’s about twice the size of Vermont with only 1.3 million people. A small group of entrepreneurs from Estonia want to change how food at home works. Called the GrowChef, their invention is designed to let you harvest a modest plant of lettuce every day. Through a combination of automatic internal water and nutrient distribution, led grow lights and 51 slots to grow produce you can do it all in a very small footprint. User receive can order small “plugs” that contain the seeds of the greens you want…

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Indoor Farm Tech Progress Is Amazing

Touch the Soil News #747 (The two rooftop greenhouses of Lufa Farms – photos courtesy of Lufa Farms) The cost of farming indoors is no small endeavor – cost of facilities, power costs, vertical frameworks, lighting and technology, harvesting, packing and marketing. Undaunted by the challenges, there is hardly a day that goes by that a story doesn’t come across our desks about young people with degrees in engineering, computer technology, sales and finance that want to get into the food business – Lufa Farms is one of those examples and illustrates how far indoor tech farming has come. http://corpo.lufa.com/en/index.html Organized in 2011, Lufa Farms is pushing the envelope of…

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AeroFarms Gets More Money

Touch the Soil News #715 (photo – artists rendition of AeroFarms operations – photo courtesy of AeroFarms) Aeroponics is a form of indoor vertical agriculture that raises leafy greens and herbs without sunlight, soil or pesticides. AeroFarms has a patented technology that grows plants on a reusable cloth medium. As the plant pushes roots through the cloth, the roots are then misted with water and nutrients. AeroFarms recently received more venture capital money – $34 million to be exact. This brings the total venture capital funding for AeroFarms to over $130 million since 2014. AeroFarms presently has nine (9) indoor farms, selling fresh greens to the food service sector and…

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Raising Food – Indoors or Outdoors?

Touch the Soil News #639 Over the past few years, the concept of indoor/vertical farming has taken root. They are in old warehouses with growing trays stacked 30 to 40 feet high, in recycled freight containers and specially retrofitted greenhouses. Whatever the configuration, it comes down to what is called CEA – controlled environment agriculture. So far, the consensus is that indoor CEA farming is expensive – often times more expensive than farming in the field outdoors. The cost of indoor farming includes expensive inputs such as the building, energy, infrastructure for water distribution and lighting. Despite the cost of indoor farming, pioneers are working the pieces to make it…

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LED Lights & Fresh Greens

Touch the Soil News #422 Quartz News reports that New Jersey-based AeroFarms is shipping arugula, kale and spinach from a farm inside a former Newark nightclub to grocery shelves at the same price as Earthbound – one of the largest organic farms in California. AeroFarms is just putting the finishing touches on what will be the world’s largest vertical farm (feature photo courtesy of AeroFarms – http://aerofarms.com/ Growing food indoors has been an economic challenge, considering the costs of buildings, growing platforms, heating and lights – LED lights to be specific. LED lights represent one of the biggest costs for indoor farming enterprises. Recently, the U.S. Department of Energy released…

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Philips (lighting manufacturer) Challenges Food Production Approach

Touch the Soil News #396 Producer of all things light bulbs, Philips, built one of the world’s largest research facilities in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Philips is experimenting and testing all different ranges of light waves and their impact on increasing food production yields. Alongside the technological advances in lighting, Philips is also testing growing mediums, plant adaption and indoor controlled environments. It is no accident that Philips chose the city of Eindhoven as the location of the facility – which boasts 2,500 square feet of controlled growing surface for its research. In 2011, the Eindhoven region was named the world’s Most Intelligent Community – due to its focus on fostering…

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