After the 2011 Tsunami, the Japanese were left devastated with the thought to feed its people and they had to find a way. This led Shigeharu Shimamura, a plant pathologist and CEO of Marai corp to build the world’s largest indoor farm to combat their food shortages.
The farm is built inside an old abandoned sony factory in Miyagi, Prefecture, Japan. Shigeharu Shimamura a plant physiologist and CEO of Mirai, has constructed the 25,000 square-foot factory which produces 10,000 heads of lettuce each day. The farm is made of cultivation racks, an internal irrigation system, and an led light system which is believed in resulting Growth 2.5 times faster. The LED’s emit light at an ideal wavelength for plant growth, while also optimizing night and day cycles, allowing lettuce to grow 2.5 times faster.
The farm is so much efficient that it has reduced food waste from 30 to 40 percent as compared to the lettuce grown outdoors by conventional methods. The facility is entirely pesticide-free, uses 40% less power and 99% less water than conventional crops. The lettuce grown on the site are healthier and the lettuce grown there contains 8 to 10 times more beta-carotene and two times the vitamin c, calcium and Magnesium.
In many ways, the farm’s could lead the researchers to get advances the systems and produce more with lesser inputs. This would lead to a very less amount of water utilized for growing food and eventually decrease the global carbon footprint left by using agricultural pesticides. The major drawback for fruits and vegetables grown in high-tech facilities tends them to be high priced but, the lettuce grown in Mirai corp is moderate as that of market rates.
As the population is believed to exceed 10 Billion by 2050, countries have to come up with better solutions like Mirai corp and could feed the entire population. Aero farms which is also the worlds largest indoor vertical farm was built in Newark, New Jersey. In recent days, Dubai has also announced to build the world’s largest hydroponic farm. This will lead to producing more amount of healthy food with lesser water and other inputs.