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It’s been over a yr now since I first wrote about AppHarvest (NASDAQ: APPH), a recently-SPAC’d AgTech enterprise that was seeking to conquer the fruit and veg isles.
From that First Look:
The corporate develops and operates giant indoor farms, generally known as managed setting agriculture (CEA) services. AppHarvest claims that these services can produce 30-times as a lot produce on the identical acreage as open-field farms whereas utilizing 90% much less water, with no agricultural runoff, and no soil erosion.
Furthermore, the corporate’s strategic location in Appalachian Kentucky permits them to ship produce to 70% of the US inhabitants inside 24 hours. Roughly 69% of vine crops bought within the U.S. are at present grown and imported from locations like Mexico, with transport taking as much as 2 weeks. Not solely does this minimize down on using diesel in transportation (by as much as 80%, in accordance with the corporate), however it significantly reduces the spoilage price. In fact, the corporate makes use of no chemical substances or pesticides in manufacturing and employs high-tech sensors to make sure produce is of the very best high quality when harvested.
In fact, this isn’t a novel idea. We’ve had greenhouses because the instances of Historic Rome, however AppHarvest’s daring claims concerning the energy of its know-how and processes piqued my curiosity.
And this know-how has been tried and examined. Vertical farming has been extensively adopted by The Netherlands, turning that small nation into one of many world’s greatest meals exporters.
From The National Geographic:
The Netherlands is a small, densely populated nation, with greater than 1,300 inhabitants per sq. mile. It’s bereft of virtually each useful resource lengthy considered needed for large-scale agriculture. But it’s the globe’s quantity two exporter of meals as measured by worth, second solely to the USA, which has 270 instances its landmass.
Nonetheless, it was nonetheless very early days for this enterprise…