News Commentary Experts and visionaries agree that urban farming will have a great impact on the future of food. Urban Agriculture (UA) is defined as the growing, processing and distribution of food taking place in and around the city. These operations are meant to not only provide food for citizens but also to contribute to urban environmental, social and economic sustainability. All in all, UA has the potential to reshape and renew our cities by breaking through the rural-urban dichotomy and by bridging urban dwellers to local food systems. In fact, there presently are vertical salad farms in San Francisco, microgreens grown in Manhattan warehouses and rooftops and shipping containers sprouting strawberries and mushrooms in Paris and Japan. The last few years have seen an explosion of indoor urban farms throughout the globe, with the concept of producing, well, produce in the middle of the urban jungle — capturing the attention of everyone from foodies to food journalists to investors. According to GreenBiz.com, the market for indoor urban farms was valued at $2.3 billion in 2018, with investment in the sector reaching more than $400 million, up from just $60 million just three years earlier. Active Companies in the markets today include Green Stream Holdings Inc. (OTCPK: GSFI), VivoPower International PLC (NASDAQ: VVPR), Sunrun (NASDAQ: RUN), SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWR), Sunworks, Inc. (NASDAQ: SUNW).
GreenBiz.com said: “As more people flock to cities, urban farms purport to alleviate some major issues plaguing our food systems: reducing transportation miles; decreasing water use; and producing higher yields on smaller parcels of land… There is value — both nutritional and educational — in providing food sources in the urban center. Exposing urban-dwellers to the process of growing food emphasizes that vegetables don’t originate at the grocery store and helps connect people to the food system and its role in creating a healthy planet. There is value — both nutritional and educational — in providing food sources in the urban center. Exposing urban-dwellers to the process of growing food emphasizes that vegetables don’t originate at the grocery store and helps connect people to the food system and its role in creating a healthy planet. But to truly make an impact on feeding the world, the fruits of urban farms need to be accessible to a much broader demographic. As costs come down and technology improves, they have a role in augmenting fresh food without expensive transport costs.”