Istanbul’s Indoor Vertical Agriculture Application and Research and Development Center was inaugurated on Dec. 8. The center aims to eradicate problems caused by the climate crisis. 95% of the water is used in a fully automated process that relies on specially produced artificial lights and does not require soil or the sun. The facility has the capacity to grow 24,000 items at once but because lettuce needs to be planted intermittently, 16,000 pieces of produce are currently growing. “Our ultimate goal is to grow high value-added products in areas like this with vertical farming,” Karaca said.
In an interview with the Daily Sabah, Istanbul Provincial Director of Agriculture and Forestry Ahmet Yavuz Karaca mentioned, “The location is 30 meters underground, on the negative eighth level, in a parking lot owned by the Kathane Municipality. Despite London’s center being 2.5 meters deeper, this makes it the second-deepest indoor vertical agricultural facility in the world.”
The Indoor Vertical Agriculture Application and Research and Development Center in Istanbul was opened on December 8 in the New Culture Center Complex in Kathane with the presence of Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Vahit Kirişci. The facility was designed to bring vegetable production closer to the city in order to save logistical costs, prevent product loss, and give city residents access to affordable, fresh produce.
Spanning 700 square meters, the vertical farming research center only has a 250 sqm production area capable of yielding about 20 acres a year worth of outdoor produce. The goal of the vertical farming center is to grow high-value-added crops such as Saffron to then develop local and national technology and ultimately become a research and development hub for the country.
Image provided by Burak Karaduman