Humans have mastered agriculture for the last 10.000 years, during which different climates, cultures, and technologies have driven and defined farming development. Nevertheless, a summer storm, voracious pests or a bad drought can still ruin the harvest and destroy months of hard work. But not anymore, according to Japanese plant physiologist Shigeharu Shimamura, who transfered intensive agriculture under the roof.
Shimamura converted a former Sony Corporation semiconductor factory in Miyagi Prefecture, eastern Japan, into the world’s largest indoor farm.
The high-tech indoor farm, illuminated by 17.500 LEDs and nearly half the size of a football field, opened on the summer of 2014 and it is already producing 10.000 heads of lettuce per day, 100 times more per square foot than traditional methods.
With 40% less power, 80% less food waste and 99% less water usage than outdoor fields, the indoor factory farm shortened the cycle of days and nights in its artificial environment, growing vegetable faster, while optimizing temperature, lighting, humidity and space.
The Japan team believes that indoor cultivation could be a solution to food shortages in the world. They are working on more indoor farms in Hong Kong and Russia. Shimamura states: “Finally, we are about to start the real agricultural industrialization”. Could this be the future of agriculture?