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Farms in the City

It is very exciting to report on three new and inventive ways to produce and sell food on the retail scene.

These promise to utilize modern sustainable agriculture techniques to make good food available to the local masses.

All encompass the theme that healthy food should not have to go on a massive mile journey to get to the table.

These fresh food concepts are friendly for the environment as well as the surrounding shoppers.

Located in the East End of London, FARM:shop is just what its name says. This farm inside a shop aims to make fresh food accessible to the neighboring city inhabitants. In addition to various greenhouse grown fruit, vegetables and herbs, there are also chickens housed on the roof and tanks filled with fish.

Those who came up with the concept wanted to offer a way of providing agricultural products in a manner that made more sense than the existing model of food industrialization. Sprung from the belief that the current means in which food is dispersed is inefficient and lacking both in availability and energy resources, the shop burns up less power manufacturing foods for its residential customers than does the average non-local producer.

Park Supermarket in Randstad, Holland is an ideal in the works which plans to cultivate its entire inventory on its own land and with sustainably generated, simulated microclimates to provide a workable atmosphere for the food to grow. This city farming agenda lays out a 4,000 open acre diagram of farmland right in a bustling city area. Creators believe this will decrease food and energy costs, as well as carbon emissions which come with food production. They also state the need for a more multifaceted means of agriculture to meet food demands and provide more healthy alternatives.

Although critics doubt this model can develop on a wide scale since controlling several climates of this size is hard to replicate, and some question the application of artificial climates, a fully independent market is a neat concept.

Another inventive food endeavor is a vertical farm planned to open up on the South Side of Chicago, Illinois, presenting itself as a zero waste facility. The Plant has seemingly thought of it all when considering the wasteful side of food production. Enlisting an anaerobic digester, which puts bacteria to work breaking down waste material to be used as fertilizer, will be a huge help in eliminating waste. The facility also recycles materials as well as waste to make it super-efficient. Various farming techniques will be utilized to make the most of the growing space.

Positioned in a former meatpacking plant, The Plant already has up and running hydroponic and aquaponic farms, bakers and a tea brewer, whose goods are sold on to local shops and restaurants.

Ecologically resourceful concepts in agricultural that bring the farm to the people are welcome notions. Trying to go back to a more natural way of growing and obtaining food, as highlighted in these programs, are much needed designs especially in some areas where healthy foods may not be readily available.

Furthermore, converting existing spaces into sustainable production capable services has to be considered. Using conservation models to decrease energy use and food travel time, and increase variety, is crucial in a growing world.

Image: CNN

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