Wednesday, April 13, 2011

High intensity farming done right.

Those people who have to listen to me have an occasional rant in person should be familiar with my preoccupation with the planets food security situation over the next 40-50 years. Sometime around 2050 we should be hitting 9 billion or so, which means we have to increase our food production by about 50%. Which is huge. Especially since, as far as I can tell, we've pretty much reached the peak of what we can do with pumping fertilizer  and current pest control methods. I'm pretty sure that if this problem gets solved, it's going to have to be a multi-part solution. Some form of population control so that we don't continue growing, I think genetic engineering will be a tool that we should be using to make farming more sustainable - less fertilizer, less pesticide/herbicides. Then there is this. It's something worth looking at at least. Indoor intensive growth, low footprint, no pesticides, high yield, efficient use of water. My primary question is whether it's sustainable, i.e where are they getting the soil/nutrients from? And how expensive is it? It's not much use (at the moment) if it doubles the price of vegetables, though with decreased transport costs, I don't think it would.

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