Beyond the traditional leafy greens, berries, or, aromatics that are often harvested in indoor farming facilities, an increasing number of “new” crops are emerging as viable segments the industry could focus on. Though it may seem like there are new, most of these crops emerging are the results of years of experience and trials leading to their emergence.
Tree sprouts, Saffron, Algae, and, Potato farming can be seen as prominent segments in the future for the indoor farming sector as companies provide viable solutions to today’s challenges. Companies like Intelligent Growth Solutions have successfully conducted conifer trials improving their growth rate, LettUs Grow conducted trials for apple tree whips, Veggitech is becoming the largest saffron indoor farming facility, and VAXA technologies have proven advantages in growing microalgae in vertical farms.
Tree Sprouts Projects Are Emerging
- Fruit Trees
Fruit trees are an emerging trend in the indoor farming sector as an increasing number of companies are trialing fruit tree whip/sprouts in an indoor farming facility to investigate if any cost, quality, or health can be improved over time.
Certain fruit trees have witnessed impressive damages incurred by climate hazards. For instance, late freezing temperatures ahead of this year’s summer have destroyed most apple tree whip/sprouts in Northern France, and heatwaves throughout the summer have slowed down the growth of these sprouts. This is critical for a market worth USD 78Bn as of 2019 and could lead to additional losses incurred by growers already dealing with inflation rates, missing labor workforce, climate hazards impacts, and other localized events affecting their financial results.
Recently, indoor farming company LettUs Grow and Bardsley England have partnered to trial apple tree whip propagation using soilless growing technology. The objective is to probe whether the aeroponic systems can show improvements in the quality, cost, and health of the tree whips/sprouts with yield and resource consumption, also being tracked over time. Both companies already made trials throughout 2021 which showed, according to LettUs Grow’s statement, that all tree whips/sprouts reached their maximum growth target within the 2-month target.
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Image provided by VAXA Technologies.