An innovative vertical farming demonstration building has been unveiled by Scotland’s Intelligent Growth Solutions Ltd which is is arguably the world’s most technically advanced indoor farm.
The IGS facility utilises its ground-breaking, patented power and communications technologies to address the key challenges facing the indoor farming industry. Fundamental barriers of cost of power and labour have inhibited the sector’s expansion to date, as well as the inability to produce consistent and quality produce at scale. The technology has been designed to overcome these barriers and significantly lower the cost of production overall.
With global market growth predicted at 24 % over the next three years, opportunities are substantial, with over 95 % of its technology solutions expected to be exported. The farm will not be producing crops for sale, but IGS will be collaborating with growers, retailers and international organisations to deliver the hardware and software platforms to revolutionise indoor growing environments.
Vertical farming offers huge reductions in water wastage, the elimination of the use of pesticides and a huge reduction in food miles. It allows produce to be grown locally and on demand, which could reduce fresh food waste by up to 90 %.
Significant demand is already being realised amongst growers, retailers and national governments aiming to address food security issues and alternative methods of production in their regions.
“The global horticulture market is crying out for new approaches to enhancing food production in terms of yield, quality and consistency. It is also searching for ways to reduce power consumption and labour costs and our technology has been designed to fundamentally address this,” said David Farquhar, CEO of IGS.
“Annual industry spend exceeds $10 billion with compound annual growth of 24 per cent. We are well positioned to help our customers profitably expand their businesses on the back of this growth.”
The location of the new facility at the James Hutton Institute near Dundee was deliberately chosen to enhance collaboration opportunities. Scientists and researchers at the Institute will be working with IGS to better understand how growing under lights can impact different varieties of crop growth, as well as drive increased productivity.