By Mario De Jesus –
Innovating current processes to be more sustainable is currently a priority to many cities and countries. One vital process that needs to be improved is how we produce food. Sustainable agriculture is seeing many innovations to combat climate change, feed the growing population, and use fewer resources.
We all rely on agriculture to live, but agriculture is very demanding to our planet. As of now, the global water usage for agriculture is 70%, which is expected to increase by 15% by 2050. As our population grows to 9 billion people, we will need to double our food output by 2050.
The future of agriculture is a vital factor for the fate of the human race. To pivot to a better future that can feed the future generations while being sustainable, we must work on these solutions now by testing better processes and technology to implement in farms both small and large.
Agriculture presents unique challenges to different parts of the world due to the environment, resources, population, and capital. Everyone’s approach will be different and will require some adjustments when it comes to implementing solutions.
Recently, there has been a push to use precision agriculture and different farming techniques. Some farming techniques include hydroponics, aeroponics, and aquaponics which use up to 90% less water. Companies like Aerofarms have created vertical farms which utilize aeroponics and precision agriculture. Aeroponics already uses significantly less water, but with the help of precision agriculture, less water can be used. Aerofarms uses advanced technology like sensors and bioinformatics to not only water the plants perfectly, but also give the plants the proper nutrients and fix any deficiencies. Many companies like Aerofarms prefer indoor farming since they can better control the temperature, moisture, and pests resulting in no pesticides.
As companies like Aerofarms start sprouting up around the globe, farms will be able to deliver their produce to the market fresher than ever before since these modern farms are within the city itself.
Companies like Aerofarms are the start of the agricultural revolution since there are still ways to improve this technology. Since much of the agricultural technology is still new it makes the price of the product much more expensive for the consumers. The energy that is used to power the lights within indoor farms also needs to be powered by a clean green source of energy in order to be sustainable.
In conclusion, agriculture is an industry that is needing our attention in order to improve current methods of farming to feed the growing population while being sustainable. Companies are currently setting out to create new technologies that can improve our farming methods. Although they still have ways to go, it is crucial to start now and try before it is too late.
Mario studies computer science at the University of Texas at San Antonio. He has been programming since the age of 12 and has developed programs that have been used by businesses or sold to clients. Mario currently volunteers at a research lab that studies the soil microbiome to preserve soil and soil health. He strives to merge technology and agriculture to make food production environmentally sustainable and lower the cost for both the consumer and producer.