A 2300 square meter former semiconductor plant has become the world's largest indoor vegetable farm, thanks to Shigeru Shimamura and special LED lights from General Electric.
The farm produces 10,000 heads of lettuce per day all while using less than 1% of the water needed for a normal farm, and none of the weather or pest related risks that come with growing outdoors. Produce waste is also slashed from 50 to just 10% as well.
Shimamura's indoor farming company, Mirai, has partnered with GE and is looking to set up similar operations in locations around the world, starting with Hong Kong and Russia.
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And in North Carolina (and all over the country) we're playing games with legalizing industrial hemp. Japan's going to kick our asses in agriculture like they did for a while in automotives and electronics if we do not wake up.
+Dennis Justice Hemp isn't a game, it's a very versatile and useful crop that helps revitalize soil or can be grown in poor soil without the need for massive amounts of fertilizers. For goodness sakes it was the backbone of American industrial agriculture before DuPont came along and essentially monopolized the textile industry. For one thing, it would revolutionize the paper industry with efficiency and reducing demand on lumber harvesting. This LED tech is good too, but it's far more effective in Japan where space and arable land is an issue. It would be great in harsher places like the east coast of the US where long winters would make growing difficult. Ideally it would cut down on wasteful shipping. People everywhere need to start growing stuff locally. With better LED efficiency, a lot of people will be able to do so.
"Peter Friedman1 week ago"
"Anyone know which specific things they are doing that other major indoor vegetable cultivation operations definitely aren't? Are they really quite as far ahead of others as they seem to be saying they are?"
Peter, what they're doing that we are not doing is WORKING COOPERATIVELY with each other... and PRIORITIZING society's needs instead of corporate profiteering. It's really very simple: The Japanese do NOT subscribe to our insanely greedy CAPITALISM as evidenced by the fact that there is a RESTRICTION on the ratio between a CEO's yearly income compared with that of the common worker! "We" would never consider such a thing... although it DOES exist in many other countries to a lesser extent than in Japan. ;-)
+Gabi Taylor Actually, I wouldn't be surprised if this indoor farming ended up more profitable than traditional farming. Although there are extra costs in building the farm and electricity, you save on water use and have much better yield, not to mention being able to market the crop as "low-waste". Maybe you don't even need pesticides for these. I wish they actually published these numbers.
Necessity being the mother of all invention I guess the Japanese deserve some kudos here. This is though the obvious progression of human life on Earth. Lets go underground with it, and use the oxygenated air to air condition subterranean cities, then channel the CO2 rich air back to the plants. All this really is is an example of people still being miles off the mark for paradise.
Did Tomo News suddenly abandon their largest channel?!? There is a new TomoUSA channel that they're updating now and the new videos here have stopped.
A message to Tomo: If you're abandoning this channel and replacing it with new ones, you should definitely make a video stating this or else you'll lose a lot of potential subscribers and traffic!
I like these positive science videos and I wish Tomo would do more of them.
But I kind of understand why they aren't made more often, as I think it would be very difficult for a lettuce farming video to go viral.
+Lorben Mc Carry The ignorance on both sides of this argument is disappointing. Here are the facts, morons:
The Mirai farm is in Tagajo, Miyagi Prefecture, Japan.
This is seventy miles north of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station.
According to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, "except for a few isolated locations directly outside the plant's outlet, the radionuclide concentrations remain within the World Health Organizations (WHO) guidelines for drinking water" (http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1326/ML13263A306.pdf).
Seventy miles north is not "directly outside the plant's outlet", so the Mirai farm is safe from contamination.