Agri & Gardening

About: <p>Growing food, either commercially or as a hobby is one of the most satisfying things you can do. It is however not without challenges. Protection against natural or man-made threats, irrigation or other treatments of the soil has to be done with care.</p> <p>Agriculture is the process of producing food, feed, fibre and many other desired products by the cultivation of certain plants. The practice of agriculture is also known as &lsquo;farming&rsquo;, while scientists, inventors and others devoted to improving farming methods and implements are also said to be engaged in agriculture.<br />Subsistence farming; who farms a small area with limited resource inputs, and produces only enough food to meet the needs of his/her family. At the other end is commercial intensive agriculture, including industrial agriculture. Such farming involves large fields, large resource inputs (pesticides, fertilizers, etc.), and a high level of mechanization.</p> <p>Nowadays, critical attention is given to industrial agriculture. Alternatives are proposed such as regenerative agriculture, the use of drones, <a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/agri-gardening/smart-agriculture-will-be-data--ai--driven-agriculture">smart techniques</a> and blockchain. The use of fertilizer and water in large quantities is also criticized. The risks of monocultures are large and in combination with the depletion of agricultural land, the reduction of insects and <a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/category/climate">climate change</a>, it is necessary to change our view on industrial agriculture and growing crops.</p> <p>If there was an urge to come up with a sustainable way of agriculture and gardening solutions and share these topics globally it&rsquo;s now! WhatsOrb Global Sustainability X-change Platform is for you, storytellers and influencers to write about tiny houses, your experiences and expectations for the future at home and globally.&nbsp;<br /> <br /> Global Sustainability X-change, that&rsquo;s what you can do together with WhatsOrb.&nbsp;<a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/blog/your-shared-sustainable-ideas-make-our-earth-a-better-place">What's in for me?</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
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Vertical Agriculture – Future Of Farming Is About To Get Off The Ground
Future of farming is about to get off the ground – quite literally. In a brand new warehouse in Wageningen, The Netherlands, vertical farming is taking shape, with crops being grown above one another instead of next to each other. Farming and purple light When you enter the warehouse, the first thing that stands out is the purple. The plants, stacked one above the other in KeyGene’s research greenhouse, are bathing in a sea of ​​purple light. And we haven’t even seen the true extent of it yet. “We have just added some more green (light) so you can see the plants better”, says Rolf Mank. “Normally, the plants are surrounded by even more purple”. He pulls up the controls for the lights on his tablet and increases the red value – and indeed, the purple light in the greenhouse becomes even brighter. Image by: Simon Lenskens A quiet, sun-lit field and a farmer ploughing it on his tractor – this image feels hopelessly out-dated when you are walking around KeyGene’s Crop Innovation Center. The center is actually a greenhouse that is tucked away in an industrial area on the outskirts of Wageningen, and it is where the latest technologies in the field of agriculture are tested. One of the most fascinating techniques is vertical farming, the cultivation of crops above each other instead of next to each other - agriculture in 3D, so to speak. Revolutionising urban farming Rolf Mank is KeyGene’s expert in vertical agriculture. In the new research greenhouse Mank has 3 mini greenhouses for studying crops that are grown one on top of each other. The sides of these greenhouses, which resemble large walk-in coolers, have special shelving for steel planters to hang in. KeyGene helps growers solve problems posed by vertical agriculture, often providing innovations for breeders that allow them to develop new varieties of plants. These problems can crop up in all sorts of unexpected ways. 'Take that purple light, for example,” says Mank. “Plants look almost black in it. This makes it very difficult for you as a grower to see if there is something wrong with the plant. So you have to add a little bit of green light to observe the plant.” The term “vertical agriculture” is often used one-to-one with urban farming, agriculture within the city limits. The idea comes from metropolises in the US and Japan, where the demand for fresh vegetables is high and the costs of getting those vegetables into the city are high as well. This is where vertical agriculture can become the solution. When you stack empty apartment buildings full of planters you can fill supermarket shelves with locally grown vegetables. In Tokyo and New York, as well as other places, there are already large-scale urban farms where leafy vegetables and herbs are grown under artificial light. LEDs are lighting the way to a brighter future Social demand isn’t the only driver behind the increasing popularity of vertical agriculture – technological innovations are also driving its growth. Indoor farming generally utilises sodium lamps, which are the same as the ones used in streetlights. “These lamps convert a large part of the energy that they use not into light, but into heat. You must hang them at least three meters above the crops, otherwise they will burn.” The rapid rise of LED lighting offers a solution to this issue. Mank explains that LED lamps are much more efficient at converting energy into light and can thus be hung right above the plants. Moreover, you can play with colour. Erik Toussaint, spokesman for KeyGene, drew a wavelength of a light wave in his notepad. “The wavelengths associated with blue, red and far red are the ones that the plants enjoy the most”, he says, drawing arrows in his notepad. “They don’t perform as well under green. With LED lights, you can extract the green spectrum from the light beam, so that you do not have to put any energy into it anymore.” Square Roots' greenhouse in Brooklyn, New York. Image by: James en Karla Murray But is the grass any greener? Square Roots gives a good impression of how vertical farming looks in practice. This American company, founded by Kimbal Musk - the younger brother of Elon Musk - grows basil and lettuce in containers bathed in purple light in the heart of Brooklyn. That looks impressively advanced, but it also raises the question: is such an artificial environment actually good for the crop? There are indeed disadvantages to vertical agriculture. Or “disadvantages”, as Mank prefers to speak of them as of “opportunities”. "Take the tomato plant. In its current form it is too high for vertical agriculture. At KeyGene we have to ask: how can we adapt the plant so that it becomes shorter and thrives in a vertical greenhouse?” Mank acknowledges that they are still looking for solutions for some of the problems that vertical agriculture suffers. For example, in the case of agriculture in an enclosed space, air humidity increases rapidly, requiring expensive dehumidifiers. "And pests and diseases, which we do not know about yet, can play a role," says Mank. “In addition, many insect species cannot find their way in LED light. How does that affect plant development? And do biological pest control agents, such as predatory mites or parasitic wasps, still do their job well? These are questions that we can answer with the help of the new research greenhouse.” Vertical farming – a logical step forward or simply a trend? Marie-Christine Van Labeke, professor of plant physiology at the University of Ghent, agrees that vertical farming is on the rise. “The term has been known to researchers for twenty years”, she says over the phone. "But the new lighting technology has attracted a lot of attention." Van Labeke expects vertical agriculture to become commonplace in large cities in about ten to fifteen years. “Although much will depend on the price. Are the multi-layer system and the energy for the lamps cheap enough for the grower to be profitable?” In Ghent they are researching a form of vertical agriculture that is more familiar: in greenhouses. In principle, it is possible to build a so-called 'migrating' system, in which the layers slide one by one to the top of the greenhouse to bask in the sunlight. KeyGene has a similar system, where more than ten thousand plants move slowly through two layers and stand in the sun for half the time. This means that no energy from lamps is needed. Yet Mank and Toussaint do not expect much from vertical agriculture in greenhouses. “In the Netherlands there is sufficient light for the greenhouses and the infrastructure is in up to par. The immediate demand for fresh vegetables is already very well served, "says Toussaint. Mank adds: “In vertical agriculture we think mainly of cities like Moscow, Mumbai and Dubai. In the Netherlands it will at most serve a niche market. Think of a vertical greenhouse in the supermarket, where herbs are grown for promotion.” Combining new technology with an old practice Those who cast aside their doubts regarding vertical agriculture quickly see the ingenious possibilities that the technology entails. Van Labeke shares one such example: “Exploratory studies show that plants produce antioxidants under certain light wavelengths. This can potentially be applied by putting plants under the light at that wavelength a week before harvesting. This way you could use specific ‘light recipes’ to grow extra nutritious plants.” Marco van Schriek, expert in digital phenotyping, which is fully automatic measuring of plants, is tasked with taking KeyGene’s innovation one step further into the future. Van Schriek points to a large metal compartment. “The plants will enter the photo area via the conveyor belt,” he says. “The computer analyzes the photos and automatically puts measurement data on growth into the system.” By linking a system such as digital phenotyping to vertical agriculture, in which you can regulate all conditions such as light, temperature and air humidity, you get a fully automatic, computer-controlled agriculture, in which an algorithm determines how much water and what light the plants are being administered. And what about the farmer on his tractor? "In the end, we also help that farmer," says Toussaint. “With our advanced research we look at questions such as: how do we make a plant resistant to certain diseases? Then you will have to spray fewer pesticides and that is better for everyone.” Important vertical agriculture companies Square Roots   - Vertical agriculture in containers in the heart of Brooklyn by Kimbal Musk. AeroFarms - Large-scale domestic builder from America. Opened a 6,500 m² vertical farm in 2016, where they produce almost one million kilos of vegetables annually. Fujitsu - Japanese ICT giant transforming one of its semiconductor plants into a vertical lettuce farm - reportedly to convince farmers to use ICT services. Plenty - New player on the market. Applies 'tower agriculture', where the crops do not grow in stacked containers, but sideways in towers of sorts. GROWx – Amsterdam-based vertical farm that is the first to run entirely on renewable energy. This article is a translation of a Dutch piece by Volkskrant. Our Dutch readers can read it  here.   https://www.whatsorb.com/category/agri-gardening
Future of farming is about to get off the ground – quite literally. In a brand new warehouse in Wageningen, The Netherlands, vertical farming is taking shape, with crops being grown above one another instead of next to each other. Farming and purple light When you enter the warehouse, the first thing that stands out is the purple. The plants, stacked one above the other in KeyGene’s research greenhouse, are bathing in a sea of ​​purple light. And we haven’t even seen the true extent of it yet. “We have just added some more green (light) so you can see the plants better”, says Rolf Mank. “Normally, the plants are surrounded by even more purple”. He pulls up the controls for the lights on his tablet and increases the red value – and indeed, the purple light in the greenhouse becomes even brighter. Image by: Simon Lenskens A quiet, sun-lit field and a farmer ploughing it on his tractor – this image feels hopelessly out-dated when you are walking around KeyGene’s Crop Innovation Center. The center is actually a greenhouse that is tucked away in an industrial area on the outskirts of Wageningen, and it is where the latest technologies in the field of agriculture are tested. One of the most fascinating techniques is vertical farming, the cultivation of crops above each other instead of next to each other - agriculture in 3D, so to speak. Revolutionising urban farming Rolf Mank is KeyGene’s expert in vertical agriculture. In the new research greenhouse Mank has 3 mini greenhouses for studying crops that are grown one on top of each other. The sides of these greenhouses, which resemble large walk-in coolers, have special shelving for steel planters to hang in. KeyGene helps growers solve problems posed by vertical agriculture, often providing innovations for breeders that allow them to develop new varieties of plants. These problems can crop up in all sorts of unexpected ways. 'Take that purple light, for example,” says Mank. “Plants look almost black in it. This makes it very difficult for you as a grower to see if there is something wrong with the plant. So you have to add a little bit of green light to observe the plant.” The term “vertical agriculture” is often used one-to-one with urban farming, agriculture within the city limits. The idea comes from metropolises in the US and Japan, where the demand for fresh vegetables is high and the costs of getting those vegetables into the city are high as well. This is where vertical agriculture can become the solution. When you stack empty apartment buildings full of planters you can fill supermarket shelves with locally grown vegetables. In Tokyo and New York, as well as other places, there are already large-scale urban farms where leafy vegetables and herbs are grown under artificial light. LEDs are lighting the way to a brighter future Social demand isn’t the only driver behind the increasing popularity of vertical agriculture – technological innovations are also driving its growth. Indoor farming generally utilises sodium lamps, which are the same as the ones used in streetlights. “These lamps convert a large part of the energy that they use not into light, but into heat. You must hang them at least three meters above the crops, otherwise they will burn.” The rapid rise of LED lighting offers a solution to this issue. Mank explains that LED lamps are much more efficient at converting energy into light and can thus be hung right above the plants. Moreover, you can play with colour. Erik Toussaint, spokesman for KeyGene, drew a wavelength of a light wave in his notepad. “The wavelengths associated with blue, red and far red are the ones that the plants enjoy the most”, he says, drawing arrows in his notepad. “They don’t perform as well under green. With LED lights, you can extract the green spectrum from the light beam, so that you do not have to put any energy into it anymore.” Square Roots' greenhouse in Brooklyn, New York. Image by: James en Karla Murray But is the grass any greener? Square Roots gives a good impression of how vertical farming looks in practice. This American company, founded by Kimbal Musk - the younger brother of Elon Musk - grows basil and lettuce in containers bathed in purple light in the heart of Brooklyn. That looks impressively advanced, but it also raises the question: is such an artificial environment actually good for the crop? There are indeed disadvantages to vertical agriculture. Or “disadvantages”, as Mank prefers to speak of them as of “opportunities”. "Take the tomato plant. In its current form it is too high for vertical agriculture. At KeyGene we have to ask: how can we adapt the plant so that it becomes shorter and thrives in a vertical greenhouse?” Mank acknowledges that they are still looking for solutions for some of the problems that vertical agriculture suffers. For example, in the case of agriculture in an enclosed space, air humidity increases rapidly, requiring expensive dehumidifiers. "And pests and diseases, which we do not know about yet, can play a role," says Mank. “In addition, many insect species cannot find their way in LED light. How does that affect plant development? And do biological pest control agents, such as predatory mites or parasitic wasps, still do their job well? These are questions that we can answer with the help of the new research greenhouse.” Vertical farming – a logical step forward or simply a trend? Marie-Christine Van Labeke, professor of plant physiology at the University of Ghent, agrees that vertical farming is on the rise. “The term has been known to researchers for twenty years”, she says over the phone. "But the new lighting technology has attracted a lot of attention." Van Labeke expects vertical agriculture to become commonplace in large cities in about ten to fifteen years. “Although much will depend on the price. Are the multi-layer system and the energy for the lamps cheap enough for the grower to be profitable?” In Ghent they are researching a form of vertical agriculture that is more familiar: in greenhouses. In principle, it is possible to build a so-called 'migrating' system, in which the layers slide one by one to the top of the greenhouse to bask in the sunlight. KeyGene has a similar system, where more than ten thousand plants move slowly through two layers and stand in the sun for half the time. This means that no energy from lamps is needed. Yet Mank and Toussaint do not expect much from vertical agriculture in greenhouses. “In the Netherlands there is sufficient light for the greenhouses and the infrastructure is in up to par. The immediate demand for fresh vegetables is already very well served, "says Toussaint. Mank adds: “In vertical agriculture we think mainly of cities like Moscow, Mumbai and Dubai. In the Netherlands it will at most serve a niche market. Think of a vertical greenhouse in the supermarket, where herbs are grown for promotion.” Combining new technology with an old practice Those who cast aside their doubts regarding vertical agriculture quickly see the ingenious possibilities that the technology entails. Van Labeke shares one such example: “Exploratory studies show that plants produce antioxidants under certain light wavelengths. This can potentially be applied by putting plants under the light at that wavelength a week before harvesting. This way you could use specific ‘light recipes’ to grow extra nutritious plants.” Marco van Schriek, expert in digital phenotyping, which is fully automatic measuring of plants, is tasked with taking KeyGene’s innovation one step further into the future. Van Schriek points to a large metal compartment. “The plants will enter the photo area via the conveyor belt,” he says. “The computer analyzes the photos and automatically puts measurement data on growth into the system.” By linking a system such as digital phenotyping to vertical agriculture, in which you can regulate all conditions such as light, temperature and air humidity, you get a fully automatic, computer-controlled agriculture, in which an algorithm determines how much water and what light the plants are being administered. And what about the farmer on his tractor? "In the end, we also help that farmer," says Toussaint. “With our advanced research we look at questions such as: how do we make a plant resistant to certain diseases? Then you will have to spray fewer pesticides and that is better for everyone.” Important vertical agriculture companies Square Roots   - Vertical agriculture in containers in the heart of Brooklyn by Kimbal Musk. AeroFarms - Large-scale domestic builder from America. Opened a 6,500 m² vertical farm in 2016, where they produce almost one million kilos of vegetables annually. Fujitsu - Japanese ICT giant transforming one of its semiconductor plants into a vertical lettuce farm - reportedly to convince farmers to use ICT services. Plenty - New player on the market. Applies 'tower agriculture', where the crops do not grow in stacked containers, but sideways in towers of sorts. GROWx – Amsterdam-based vertical farm that is the first to run entirely on renewable energy. This article is a translation of a Dutch piece by Volkskrant. Our Dutch readers can read it  here.   https://www.whatsorb.com/category/agri-gardening
Vertical Agriculture – Future Of Farming Is About To Get Off The Ground
Vertical Agriculture – Future Of Farming Is About To Get Off The Ground
Superfood! Murnong Gets Back To Our Plates: Australia
Our diets have always been an important part of our lifestyles and they have changed a lot over the centuries. Foods that were previously considered delicacies are now available at any supermarket and some of our ancestor’s staples have been forgotten. This is the case with murnong, also known as yam daisy, a root  vegetable from Australia that has once dominated Indigenous Australians’ menus. Today, historian, author and agriculturalist, Bruce Pascoeis hoping to re-introduce this “superfood” and chefs across Australia are very keen to help. Key role in Aboriginal people’s daily lives At first glance, murnong doesn’t look very special – in fact, one could easily mistake it for a dandelion – but the root of the plant has played a key role in Aboriginal people’s daily lives before European settlement. The root is nutty and starchy and according to Pascoe it is eight times as nutritious as a potato. Image by: Adobe Stock, Murnong Yam daisies were easy to grow and harvest and provided a steady supply of food all year round, which made them a perfect crop for Indigenous farmers. However, when settlers came to Australia they brought over farm animals and rabbits. Rabbits, sheep and cattle have taken a liking to the plant and farm fields that used to be carpets of yellow yam flowers were now bare. Livestock’s hooves have also damaged the ground, making it impossible for murnong to grow back. Today can still find some yam daisies growing in the bushland in South Eastern Australia, but the plant is still quite rare in the wild. Combining traditional  food and modern gastronomy Bruce Pascoe is very passionate about reviving methods of traditional horticulture and bringing back the traditional foods. He is doing so with the help of Gurandgi Munjie, a group of Aboriginal men and women sharing the same dream of making native foods mainstream. Together they have been propagating various native grains, fruits and herbs, but murnong has always been the star of the show. Pascoe calls it a superfood for its nutritional properties and chefs around the country experiment with the different ways yam daisies can be cooked and the unique flavours they can bring to the table. Ben Shewry is the chef of Melbourne’s Attica and one of Pascoe’s most enthusiastic supporters. He is known for his creativity and passion for Indigenous foods and was quoted saying: “I’m longing for the day when we can all buy them [murnong] from Gurandgi Munjie and support Aboriginal men and women to grow the crops of their culture”. It is interesting to note the versatility of murnong when it comes to gastronomy, as it can be eaten both raw and roasted or fried. When eaten raw, the root is similar in texture to a radish and has a sweet coconutty and grassy taste. Once roasted or fried the flavour transforms into something similar to a salty potato. And chef Shewry recommends trying the leaves of the plant as well – with their slightly bitter taste they are perfect for salads with some red-wine vinegar dressing. It will be a while before we would be able to see murnongs aplenty, but it is already gathering a lot of attention and hopefully more of us will be able to enjoy this “superfood” very soon. Are there any native foods from your region that have been forgotten or perhaps even gone extinct? Share your responses with us in the comments! All about Lifestyle
Our diets have always been an important part of our lifestyles and they have changed a lot over the centuries. Foods that were previously considered delicacies are now available at any supermarket and some of our ancestor’s staples have been forgotten. This is the case with murnong, also known as yam daisy, a root  vegetable from Australia that has once dominated Indigenous Australians’ menus. Today, historian, author and agriculturalist, Bruce Pascoeis hoping to re-introduce this “superfood” and chefs across Australia are very keen to help. Key role in Aboriginal people’s daily lives At first glance, murnong doesn’t look very special – in fact, one could easily mistake it for a dandelion – but the root of the plant has played a key role in Aboriginal people’s daily lives before European settlement. The root is nutty and starchy and according to Pascoe it is eight times as nutritious as a potato. Image by: Adobe Stock, Murnong Yam daisies were easy to grow and harvest and provided a steady supply of food all year round, which made them a perfect crop for Indigenous farmers. However, when settlers came to Australia they brought over farm animals and rabbits. Rabbits, sheep and cattle have taken a liking to the plant and farm fields that used to be carpets of yellow yam flowers were now bare. Livestock’s hooves have also damaged the ground, making it impossible for murnong to grow back. Today can still find some yam daisies growing in the bushland in South Eastern Australia, but the plant is still quite rare in the wild. Combining traditional  food and modern gastronomy Bruce Pascoe is very passionate about reviving methods of traditional horticulture and bringing back the traditional foods. He is doing so with the help of Gurandgi Munjie, a group of Aboriginal men and women sharing the same dream of making native foods mainstream. Together they have been propagating various native grains, fruits and herbs, but murnong has always been the star of the show. Pascoe calls it a superfood for its nutritional properties and chefs around the country experiment with the different ways yam daisies can be cooked and the unique flavours they can bring to the table. Ben Shewry is the chef of Melbourne’s Attica and one of Pascoe’s most enthusiastic supporters. He is known for his creativity and passion for Indigenous foods and was quoted saying: “I’m longing for the day when we can all buy them [murnong] from Gurandgi Munjie and support Aboriginal men and women to grow the crops of their culture”. It is interesting to note the versatility of murnong when it comes to gastronomy, as it can be eaten both raw and roasted or fried. When eaten raw, the root is similar in texture to a radish and has a sweet coconutty and grassy taste. Once roasted or fried the flavour transforms into something similar to a salty potato. And chef Shewry recommends trying the leaves of the plant as well – with their slightly bitter taste they are perfect for salads with some red-wine vinegar dressing. It will be a while before we would be able to see murnongs aplenty, but it is already gathering a lot of attention and hopefully more of us will be able to enjoy this “superfood” very soon. Are there any native foods from your region that have been forgotten or perhaps even gone extinct? Share your responses with us in the comments! All about Lifestyle
Superfood! Murnong Gets Back To Our Plates: Australia
Superfood! Murnong Gets Back To Our Plates: Australia
Vegetables, Fruit, Edible Flowers, But Also Bees In Cities Urban Farming
All names for this trend, which seems to take a lot of steps in several world cities. The cultivation of vegetables, fruit, edible flowers, but also the keeping of bees in the city. And we are not talking about that private garden on your roof terrace, but about edible green on a large scale. This can be done in rooms where there is no daylight, but it can also be on walls, roofs, vacant lot or even on boats. In this way you bring fresh food, in a shorter chain, with a smaller ecological footprint, to the residents of the city. And that is badly needed, because more than half of the world's population lives in the city and the United Nations predicts that by 2050 this will have risen to 66 percent. The floating food garden Swale moores in New York The floating food garden Swale has moored in New York. This barge with vegetables, fruit and edible flowers is located throughout the summer at various locations in Brooklyn and the Bronx. The inventor of this project is artist Mary Mattingly. She observed two years ago that all food in New York came from outside the city. As a result, it was not only less fresh, but also caused pollution by the transport and packaging that was needed. Moreover, it was not as easy to buy fresh fruit and vegetables everywhere in New York at an affordable price. That is why residents of the city can come to pick and taste for free on this boat and they can take home what they need. Paris wants to change a third of the green space into  urban agriculture Paris came with the message that the municipality wants to change a third of the green space into urban agriculture. Mayor Anne Hidalgo stated that she wanted to make the French capital a greener city. The goal is to cover 100 hectares of roofs and walls with fruit and vegetables by 2020. There are already more than 70 companies that would like to participate in this project. But urban farming started earlier in Paris: in 2014 La REcyclerie already built a huge urban farm around a café that is located in a converted train station. Shanghai want to realize a city farm The 100-hectare project spread throughout Paris sounds modest when you look at the initiative of the American landscape architects Sasaki Associates. They want to realize one city farm with the same surface area in the Chinese city of Shanghai with the aim of a sustainable food network. On this farm several crops are grown in layers above each other. In addition, fish are also bred. By using aquaponics, the water in which the fish swim can be used as food for the plants. With this project, the architects expect to be able to meet the growing demand for sustainable and locally produced meals in Shanghai. Linköping designs office buildings where one half consists of offices and the other half of a gigantic inner farm The Swedish Plantagon (not to be confused with the Pantagon) designs office buildings where one half of the building consists of offices and the other half of a gigantic inner farm. The building must therefore be called the World Food Building. The building in the Swedish city Linköping should be completed by 2020. Then fruit and vegetables are grown using the hydryponic method, so that not a huge amount of land is needed to be successful. The inner farm is located on the south side of the building and has a huge glass facade to let in as much light as possible. The Hague has opened 'the Farm' The New Farm has opened its doors in The Hague with six floors and a roof full of urban agriculture. In 2016, Urban Farmers opened the doors on the roof of the former Philips building. They built here Europe's largest commercial aquaponic roof farm where urban vegetables and fish are grown. The manure from the fish is used again for the cultivation of the plants. Apparently, the trend of urban agriculture can not be stopped here either, because now - two years later - not only is the roof devoted to urban farming, but the whole building has newcomers such as Haagse Zwam and Rebel Urban Farms. By: Wyke Potjer https://www.whatsorb.com/agri-gardening/future-farming-findin-better-way-feed-world
All names for this trend, which seems to take a lot of steps in several world cities. The cultivation of vegetables, fruit, edible flowers, but also the keeping of bees in the city. And we are not talking about that private garden on your roof terrace, but about edible green on a large scale. This can be done in rooms where there is no daylight, but it can also be on walls, roofs, vacant lot or even on boats. In this way you bring fresh food, in a shorter chain, with a smaller ecological footprint, to the residents of the city. And that is badly needed, because more than half of the world's population lives in the city and the United Nations predicts that by 2050 this will have risen to 66 percent. The floating food garden Swale moores in New York The floating food garden Swale has moored in New York. This barge with vegetables, fruit and edible flowers is located throughout the summer at various locations in Brooklyn and the Bronx. The inventor of this project is artist Mary Mattingly. She observed two years ago that all food in New York came from outside the city. As a result, it was not only less fresh, but also caused pollution by the transport and packaging that was needed. Moreover, it was not as easy to buy fresh fruit and vegetables everywhere in New York at an affordable price. That is why residents of the city can come to pick and taste for free on this boat and they can take home what they need. Paris wants to change a third of the green space into  urban agriculture Paris came with the message that the municipality wants to change a third of the green space into urban agriculture. Mayor Anne Hidalgo stated that she wanted to make the French capital a greener city. The goal is to cover 100 hectares of roofs and walls with fruit and vegetables by 2020. There are already more than 70 companies that would like to participate in this project. But urban farming started earlier in Paris: in 2014 La REcyclerie already built a huge urban farm around a café that is located in a converted train station. Shanghai want to realize a city farm The 100-hectare project spread throughout Paris sounds modest when you look at the initiative of the American landscape architects Sasaki Associates. They want to realize one city farm with the same surface area in the Chinese city of Shanghai with the aim of a sustainable food network. On this farm several crops are grown in layers above each other. In addition, fish are also bred. By using aquaponics, the water in which the fish swim can be used as food for the plants. With this project, the architects expect to be able to meet the growing demand for sustainable and locally produced meals in Shanghai. Linköping designs office buildings where one half consists of offices and the other half of a gigantic inner farm The Swedish Plantagon (not to be confused with the Pantagon) designs office buildings where one half of the building consists of offices and the other half of a gigantic inner farm. The building must therefore be called the World Food Building. The building in the Swedish city Linköping should be completed by 2020. Then fruit and vegetables are grown using the hydryponic method, so that not a huge amount of land is needed to be successful. The inner farm is located on the south side of the building and has a huge glass facade to let in as much light as possible. The Hague has opened 'the Farm' The New Farm has opened its doors in The Hague with six floors and a roof full of urban agriculture. In 2016, Urban Farmers opened the doors on the roof of the former Philips building. They built here Europe's largest commercial aquaponic roof farm where urban vegetables and fish are grown. The manure from the fish is used again for the cultivation of the plants. Apparently, the trend of urban agriculture can not be stopped here either, because now - two years later - not only is the roof devoted to urban farming, but the whole building has newcomers such as Haagse Zwam and Rebel Urban Farms. By: Wyke Potjer https://www.whatsorb.com/agri-gardening/future-farming-findin-better-way-feed-world
Vegetables, Fruit, Edible Flowers, But Also Bees In Cities Urban Farming
Vegetables, Fruit, Edible Flowers, But Also Bees In Cities Urban Farming
Urban Agriculture Growing Food On A Rooftop
The New Farm in The Hague (Netherlands) opens its doors in May 2018. Then the renovation of the six-storey Philips building on the Televisiestraat (televisionstreet) in The Hague has been completed. The New Farm is an international hub for inner-city food production and food awareness. Six floors and a roof box full of urban agriculture Residents of the first hour, after Philips and then the municipality of The Hague rejected the building, is Urban Farmers. Since 2016, this company has its own city greenhouse on the roof of the building, where urban vegetables such as courgettes, peppers, tomatoes and aubergines are grown. On the sixth floor, the Urban Farmers apply their knowledge in a fish farm (aquaponics), where the manure that is released from the fish is reused in the city greenhouse. Other companies that have established themselves in The New Farm are Haagse Zwam, Rebel Urban Farms and Uptown Greens, Horticoop & Leafy Green Machine and the first start-ups. The Kookfabriek has been a tenant of the building for 20 years, but fits well with the concept. Pioneering role The experiences with Urban Farmers were apparently good, also for the city of The Hague, because from here came the idea to fill the entire building with companies and institutions that have a relationship with urban agriculture. At the beginning of 2016, the business plan for the complete building was submitted to the municipality of The Hague, which in June 2016 gave the green light for the start of The New Farm. Now the building is ready to take a leading role nationally and internationally in the field of vertical and urban farming. Knowledge center Eveline Braam is director of The New Farm. She talks about the ambitions: "We want to be a center for food awareness in the urban environment. We are a center for city dwellers, but also a center of innovation, where companies and institutions link their knowledge. The diversity is great. There will be a knowledge center and a livinlab, and one floor is reserved for a 9-meter high LED farm, where year-round vegetables  and herbs are grown without sunlight, without pesticides. On the fourth floor there is room for new companies that actually put their vertical farming ideas into practice. For example, we have a company that grows oyster mushrooms, Haagse Zwam. But we also have a company that experiments with slats, LED lighting and climate control. This company has a Leafy Green Machine, a complete LED farm in a sea container, with a weekly harvest of 80 kilograms of lettuce. The first floor is equipped for start-ups. The interaction (synergy) between new and existing companies is very inspiring. And of course there is room for a restaurant and cooking studio 'De Kookfabriek', where we serve our vegetables, so that people can actually taste what is possible with urban farming. " Smart cities Fish farm (aquaponics) Braam sees it as the job of The New Farm to become an innovation and knowledge center. "For the companies that are in this building it is important that they sell products, but otherwise we are still for a knowledge and innovation center. There is a lot of interest at national and international level for urban farming. Of course we have a lot of knowledge about the production of vegetables in ‘the Westland’ (agricultural area in the Netherlands). We use this knowledge ", says Braam, who expects food production in relation to energy consumption and available resources to be a major issue in the coming years. "For example, how do you produce high-quality food with efficient use of natural resources? But also: How do you integrate renewable energy in this process and how do you reduce the environmental impact as a result of the logistics processes? In addition, there is the question of how we fit sensors and big data as a whole. These challenges also have strong common ground with the concept of the smart city. How do you integrate urban farming in an urban fabric? In The New Farm we look for new revenue models for urban agriculture, which in turn lead to new models for real estate and financing. And undoubtedly new regulations will emerge from all that. " Awareness But in addition to research into the above issues, there is also an important task for The New Farm in terms of awareness among city dwellers. Braam: "We invite consumers to come in, but also for example to come and eat in the restaurant. School classes can see how vegetables really grow during excursions and learn how important it is to eat  fresh vegetables and protein-rich meat substitutes. We are working on awareness. And by that I do not mean that everyone has to put a greenhouse on the roof, but for example the construction of city gardens in a neighborhood. We see sufficient possibilities on vacant pieces of land. Such projects are also good for social cohesion in the neighborhood. " Author: Gerrit Tenkink Photos: The New Farm https://www.whatsorb.com/category/agri-gardening
The New Farm in The Hague (Netherlands) opens its doors in May 2018. Then the renovation of the six-storey Philips building on the Televisiestraat (televisionstreet) in The Hague has been completed. The New Farm is an international hub for inner-city food production and food awareness. Six floors and a roof box full of urban agriculture Residents of the first hour, after Philips and then the municipality of The Hague rejected the building, is Urban Farmers. Since 2016, this company has its own city greenhouse on the roof of the building, where urban vegetables such as courgettes, peppers, tomatoes and aubergines are grown. On the sixth floor, the Urban Farmers apply their knowledge in a fish farm (aquaponics), where the manure that is released from the fish is reused in the city greenhouse. Other companies that have established themselves in The New Farm are Haagse Zwam, Rebel Urban Farms and Uptown Greens, Horticoop & Leafy Green Machine and the first start-ups. The Kookfabriek has been a tenant of the building for 20 years, but fits well with the concept. Pioneering role The experiences with Urban Farmers were apparently good, also for the city of The Hague, because from here came the idea to fill the entire building with companies and institutions that have a relationship with urban agriculture. At the beginning of 2016, the business plan for the complete building was submitted to the municipality of The Hague, which in June 2016 gave the green light for the start of The New Farm. Now the building is ready to take a leading role nationally and internationally in the field of vertical and urban farming. Knowledge center Eveline Braam is director of The New Farm. She talks about the ambitions: "We want to be a center for food awareness in the urban environment. We are a center for city dwellers, but also a center of innovation, where companies and institutions link their knowledge. The diversity is great. There will be a knowledge center and a livinlab, and one floor is reserved for a 9-meter high LED farm, where year-round vegetables  and herbs are grown without sunlight, without pesticides. On the fourth floor there is room for new companies that actually put their vertical farming ideas into practice. For example, we have a company that grows oyster mushrooms, Haagse Zwam. But we also have a company that experiments with slats, LED lighting and climate control. This company has a Leafy Green Machine, a complete LED farm in a sea container, with a weekly harvest of 80 kilograms of lettuce. The first floor is equipped for start-ups. The interaction (synergy) between new and existing companies is very inspiring. And of course there is room for a restaurant and cooking studio 'De Kookfabriek', where we serve our vegetables, so that people can actually taste what is possible with urban farming. " Smart cities Fish farm (aquaponics) Braam sees it as the job of The New Farm to become an innovation and knowledge center. "For the companies that are in this building it is important that they sell products, but otherwise we are still for a knowledge and innovation center. There is a lot of interest at national and international level for urban farming. Of course we have a lot of knowledge about the production of vegetables in ‘the Westland’ (agricultural area in the Netherlands). We use this knowledge ", says Braam, who expects food production in relation to energy consumption and available resources to be a major issue in the coming years. "For example, how do you produce high-quality food with efficient use of natural resources? But also: How do you integrate renewable energy in this process and how do you reduce the environmental impact as a result of the logistics processes? In addition, there is the question of how we fit sensors and big data as a whole. These challenges also have strong common ground with the concept of the smart city. How do you integrate urban farming in an urban fabric? In The New Farm we look for new revenue models for urban agriculture, which in turn lead to new models for real estate and financing. And undoubtedly new regulations will emerge from all that. " Awareness But in addition to research into the above issues, there is also an important task for The New Farm in terms of awareness among city dwellers. Braam: "We invite consumers to come in, but also for example to come and eat in the restaurant. School classes can see how vegetables really grow during excursions and learn how important it is to eat  fresh vegetables and protein-rich meat substitutes. We are working on awareness. And by that I do not mean that everyone has to put a greenhouse on the roof, but for example the construction of city gardens in a neighborhood. We see sufficient possibilities on vacant pieces of land. Such projects are also good for social cohesion in the neighborhood. " Author: Gerrit Tenkink Photos: The New Farm https://www.whatsorb.com/category/agri-gardening
Urban Agriculture Growing Food On A Rooftop
Urban Agriculture Growing Food On A Rooftop
Good Food: Agriculture And Food Policy. Enforce Sustainable
There will be a roundtable discussion in the Lower House (Netherlands) about the sustainability of our food system. Good news for anyone hoping for a more sustainable food policy, you might think. However, there is some criticism about the content of the interview. Making our food more sustainable Good news for anyone who thinks politics should be more concerned with the sustainability of our food system. The permanent Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality is drawing up a whole afternoon this afternoon for a roundtable discussion on 'sustainable and healthy choices for consumption'. The committee will discuss with no less than fourteen experts about the promotion of healthy choice, food waste, the role of agriculture and food policy in general. The hearing offers a unique opportunity to impress MPs on the need to really make a living from a sustainable food policy. But is that going to happen next Thursday? I have my doubts. I already read the position papers of the speakers and noted three notable misconceptions that the committee could mistakenly see as the way forward. I will discuss them below, but will also pay attention to the bright spots that I found in a number of contributions - points of light that point the way forward to an actual change. The government should not interfere too directly with a sustainable food policy A striking number of speakers embrace the concept of the food transition as the way to a more sustainable food system. Such a food transition is a 'bottom-up movement', in which the government needs to do nothing more than connect food entrepreneurs, train professionals and 'organize' transition tables. Remarkably enough, PBL Netherlands Bureau for the Environment (PBL) has questioned this approach and states that 'at present there are no measurable trends showing that the goals will be taken from the transition agenda'. The PBL states that the trend can only be reversed if we realize that 'painful' choices are made. Sustainability is not a technical, but a political problem; the government has a 'key position' in this. If the consumer makes sustainable choices, then the food system will automatically become sustainable Consumption sociologist Hans Dagevos joins in and complains that politics issues issues such as eating less meat too quickly as 'sensitive' or 'controversial' and does not dare to take effective measures. Conclusion: recognize that sustainability is a political, not a technical problem, and do not get away from the political choices that go with it. Consumers are the most important players in the chain Many speakers have a firm confidence in the ability of consumers to send the food system in the right direction. If the consumer makes sustainable choices, the thought seems to be, then the food system will become sustainable. The speakers are wary of 'restricting freedom of choice' in the case of food and state that 'sustainable and healthy choices are not programmed in the same way as with sustainable energy.' Fortunately, among the speakers there are also critics of this approach. For example, Lucas Simons of New Foresight states that it is an 'illusion' to think that the consumer will bring about the transition. He argues for a more active government to send the consumer in the right direction. Anyone who seeks pleas for strong government control is strikingly not with transition experts, but with health scientists such as Maartje Poelman from Utrecht University. Poelman states that 'structural, universal (preventive) measures aimed at the entire population (for example, reducing salt content in soup, a soda tax) lead to more health gains than an approach in which the individual's own responsibility is central (eg individual dietary advice). "Conclusion: set the standard for the consumer's sovereignty: let companies and government restrict and control choices. Sustainable food  is a niche product for a limited group of consumers Perhaps it is because no lawyers have been invited, but in the position papers I find little sense of the way in which competition law makes sustainability more difficult. Competition law is based on an economical worldview in which consumers and producers always find each other in a perfectly competitive market with complete information. This has led to the current situation, in which sustainable food is a niche product for a limited group of consumers, who pay a bit more for a product that is often only a bit more sustainable ('fair trade', 'better life', etc.). Who wants the market to do more, agreements between companies must be allowed. However, competition law is mainly concerned with consumers; not about the  environment or animal welfare. The government sent a bill to the Council of State two weeks ago to circumvent the competition rules through a kind of generally binding declaration of sustainability agreements between companies. But the bar for this is high and it is questionable whether such legal measures will not meet with objections from Brussels. Conclusion: the sustainability of our food requires a review of competition law and its interpretation by the national and European cartel watchdogs. Let's take stock: this hearing offers a unique opportunity to get the Lower House to understand the need to change our food system. But I think that most participants in the conversation have too great faith in the invisible hand of the market, the opportunities of new technology and the possibilities of a 'bottom-up' food transition. This brings with it the danger that the committee members see this hearing as an encouragement to lean back and let society do the work. However, those who look at the position papers with a sharp eye will see that there is an undercurrent that does not go along with this discourse. These are the people who argue for an agricultural policy towards a food policy, which show that market parties are trapped in profit-driven behavior and that show that most consumers do not come to a healthy choice on their own. It is also the people who argue most clearly for a government that actively and compellingly acts where necessary, and steering and facilitating where possible. For such an active attitude we need MPs who sit on the edge of their seats and realize that they themselves have the key to a better food system. By: Herman Lelieveldt All about Agri & gardening
There will be a roundtable discussion in the Lower House (Netherlands) about the sustainability of our food system. Good news for anyone hoping for a more sustainable food policy, you might think. However, there is some criticism about the content of the interview. Making our food more sustainable Good news for anyone who thinks politics should be more concerned with the sustainability of our food system. The permanent Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality is drawing up a whole afternoon this afternoon for a roundtable discussion on 'sustainable and healthy choices for consumption'. The committee will discuss with no less than fourteen experts about the promotion of healthy choice, food waste, the role of agriculture and food policy in general. The hearing offers a unique opportunity to impress MPs on the need to really make a living from a sustainable food policy. But is that going to happen next Thursday? I have my doubts. I already read the position papers of the speakers and noted three notable misconceptions that the committee could mistakenly see as the way forward. I will discuss them below, but will also pay attention to the bright spots that I found in a number of contributions - points of light that point the way forward to an actual change. The government should not interfere too directly with a sustainable food policy A striking number of speakers embrace the concept of the food transition as the way to a more sustainable food system. Such a food transition is a 'bottom-up movement', in which the government needs to do nothing more than connect food entrepreneurs, train professionals and 'organize' transition tables. Remarkably enough, PBL Netherlands Bureau for the Environment (PBL) has questioned this approach and states that 'at present there are no measurable trends showing that the goals will be taken from the transition agenda'. The PBL states that the trend can only be reversed if we realize that 'painful' choices are made. Sustainability is not a technical, but a political problem; the government has a 'key position' in this. If the consumer makes sustainable choices, then the food system will automatically become sustainable Consumption sociologist Hans Dagevos joins in and complains that politics issues issues such as eating less meat too quickly as 'sensitive' or 'controversial' and does not dare to take effective measures. Conclusion: recognize that sustainability is a political, not a technical problem, and do not get away from the political choices that go with it. Consumers are the most important players in the chain Many speakers have a firm confidence in the ability of consumers to send the food system in the right direction. If the consumer makes sustainable choices, the thought seems to be, then the food system will become sustainable. The speakers are wary of 'restricting freedom of choice' in the case of food and state that 'sustainable and healthy choices are not programmed in the same way as with sustainable energy.' Fortunately, among the speakers there are also critics of this approach. For example, Lucas Simons of New Foresight states that it is an 'illusion' to think that the consumer will bring about the transition. He argues for a more active government to send the consumer in the right direction. Anyone who seeks pleas for strong government control is strikingly not with transition experts, but with health scientists such as Maartje Poelman from Utrecht University. Poelman states that 'structural, universal (preventive) measures aimed at the entire population (for example, reducing salt content in soup, a soda tax) lead to more health gains than an approach in which the individual's own responsibility is central (eg individual dietary advice). "Conclusion: set the standard for the consumer's sovereignty: let companies and government restrict and control choices. Sustainable food  is a niche product for a limited group of consumers Perhaps it is because no lawyers have been invited, but in the position papers I find little sense of the way in which competition law makes sustainability more difficult. Competition law is based on an economical worldview in which consumers and producers always find each other in a perfectly competitive market with complete information. This has led to the current situation, in which sustainable food is a niche product for a limited group of consumers, who pay a bit more for a product that is often only a bit more sustainable ('fair trade', 'better life', etc.). Who wants the market to do more, agreements between companies must be allowed. However, competition law is mainly concerned with consumers; not about the  environment or animal welfare. The government sent a bill to the Council of State two weeks ago to circumvent the competition rules through a kind of generally binding declaration of sustainability agreements between companies. But the bar for this is high and it is questionable whether such legal measures will not meet with objections from Brussels. Conclusion: the sustainability of our food requires a review of competition law and its interpretation by the national and European cartel watchdogs. Let's take stock: this hearing offers a unique opportunity to get the Lower House to understand the need to change our food system. But I think that most participants in the conversation have too great faith in the invisible hand of the market, the opportunities of new technology and the possibilities of a 'bottom-up' food transition. This brings with it the danger that the committee members see this hearing as an encouragement to lean back and let society do the work. However, those who look at the position papers with a sharp eye will see that there is an undercurrent that does not go along with this discourse. These are the people who argue for an agricultural policy towards a food policy, which show that market parties are trapped in profit-driven behavior and that show that most consumers do not come to a healthy choice on their own. It is also the people who argue most clearly for a government that actively and compellingly acts where necessary, and steering and facilitating where possible. For such an active attitude we need MPs who sit on the edge of their seats and realize that they themselves have the key to a better food system. By: Herman Lelieveldt All about Agri & gardening
Good Food: Agriculture And Food Policy. Enforce Sustainable
Good Food: Agriculture And Food Policy. Enforce Sustainable
Agri & Gardening

Growing food, either commercially or as a hobby is one of the most satisfying things you can do. It is however not without challenges. Protection against natural or man-made threats, irrigation or other treatments of the soil has to be done with care.

Agriculture is the process of producing food, feed, fibre and many other desired products by the cultivation of certain plants. The practice of agriculture is also known as ‘farming’, while scientists, inventors and others devoted to improving farming methods and implements are also said to be engaged in agriculture.
Subsistence farming; who farms a small area with limited resource inputs, and produces only enough food to meet the needs of his/her family. At the other end is commercial intensive agriculture, including industrial agriculture. Such farming involves large fields, large resource inputs (pesticides, fertilizers, etc.), and a high level of mechanization.

Nowadays, critical attention is given to industrial agriculture. Alternatives are proposed such as regenerative agriculture, the use of drones, smart techniques and blockchain. The use of fertilizer and water in large quantities is also criticized. The risks of monocultures are large and in combination with the depletion of agricultural land, the reduction of insects and climate change, it is necessary to change our view on industrial agriculture and growing crops.

If there was an urge to come up with a sustainable way of agriculture and gardening solutions and share these topics globally it’s now! WhatsOrb Global Sustainability X-change Platform is for you, storytellers and influencers to write about tiny houses, your experiences and expectations for the future at home and globally. 

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