Indoor High-Tech Farm Produces 10,000 Heads of Lettuce a Day

#Food

Fri, Jul 11th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

The General Electric website brings to attention a project in Miyagi Prefecture in eastern Japan, where vegetables are being grown inside a high-tech facility. The plants, which receive artificial light from LED fixtures that emit light at wavelengths optimal for plant growth, only require 1% of the water needed by a regular outdoor field.

The LED lights are a key part of the farm’s magic. They allow Shimamura to control the night-and-day cycle and accelerate growth. “What we need to do is not just setting up more days and nights,” he says. “We want to achieve the best combination of photosynthesis during the day and breathing at night by controlling the lighting and the environment.”

Shimamura says that the systems allows him to grow lettuce full of vitamins and minerals two-and-a-half times faster than an outdoor farm. He is also able to cut discarded produce from 50 percent to just 10 percent of the harvest, compared to a conventional farm. As a result, the farms productivity per square foot is up 100-fold, he says.

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