What is a PLANT FACTORY?
A Plant Factory is a Multi-Level Indoor Farm that utilizes technology to control all the inputs and variables required to continuously produce high quality, hyper-local, nutritionally dense, fresh food products in any location including those with climate challenges or difficult environmental conditions.
Plant Factories are necessary;
- To provide fresh, healthy food for all,
- To meet the growing demand for hyper-local food production,
- Where climate conditions are challenging or impossible for agriculture production,
- to capitalize on low energy costs, create jobs and provide protection from price fluctuations.
A Plant Factory is a very promising and sustainable solution in urban areas with increasing populations.
The major difference between high-tech greenhouses and vertical farms is the vertical footprint that requires less land, production in a clean room hyper hygienic environment and utilizes today’s controlled environment systems that do not require rain, sunlight or soil to grow fresh food products.
All of a plant’s requirements and nature’s variables can be controlled in plant factories: including hygiene, light intensity and wavelength, water quality, climate control, wind, humidity and plant nutrition etc. Since all the production factors in a vertical farm are manageable, you can grow year- round in a consistent, dependable, safe and clean manner.
ADVANTAGES OF PLANT FACTORIES;
- Reduces land requirements by producing vertically in a multi-level environment,
- Up to 95% water saving, uses energy efficient LED lighting.
- Pesticide-free, residue-free products
- Does not pollute the environment
- It does not harm natural life
- The opportunity to grow products in all seasons regardless of the weather conditions.
- Highly productive, continuous and consistent quality product in each harvest. Longer shelf life, less shrinkage, increased inventory control,
- Earlier harvest time and increased production all year round
- Provides products with maximum freshness and nutritional value to the cities by reducing food miles.
- It helps to reduce the carbon footprint by minimizing transportation etc. needs.
WHAT IS GROWN IN PLANT FACTORIES
Although almost all plants can be grown theoretically; Practically and economically it is recommended to start with the following plants.
- Green leafy plants including the most popular products, such as;
All similar herbaceous shallow root, fast growing plants
Medicinal, aromatic, essential plants, Herbs and Spices
- Edible flowers
- Sprouts and seedlings, including young plants for growers.
In addition, R&D studies of other products such as strawberries and mushrooms are in process.
WHAT TO KNOW BEFORE INVESTMENT
A Plant Factory investment is not for everyone. Therefore, detailed preliminary research should be done.
This pre-investment analysis, which may cost a little more than a modern greenhouse investment, will answer the following issues related to crop selection and the market that you intend to operate in and will enable you to have a better understanding of the long term benefits of your potential investment.