"Japanese crazy about "vegetable factories"

25,000 heads of lettuce per day, without using crop protection and at yet absolutely hygienically: in Japan new plant factories supply gigantic yields. In the future this super greenhouse could displace open ground cultivation.

The expectations are gigantic: in Japan the first 'Vegetable factories' have successfully been put into use. The harvest yield of the plants in the factories is even 100 times higher than with open ground cultivation. For mountainous Japan this is extremely good news, as arable land is in short supply.
The factories are 20 floors high with plants on each one, and each floor is about 40 cm. high. In this the plants are grown in substratum with a nutritional solution. The principle brings to mind keeping chickens in cages. Cultivation is done without soil, the roots of the lettuce are encased in an indestructible material which can be recycled, such as rock wool, and can be soaked thoroughly by the nutritional solution. The water may be led in a circular course and used again. The water requirement as a result is 90% lower than it is in open ground cultivation, where vegetables are usually given water artificially.

Contrary to the normal greenhouse this is an airtight isolated system. With this system the carbon dioxide in the air can be increased by four to five times. This increases the growth of the vegetables. The hermetic insulation prevents plant diseases or harmful insects from entering. The use of crop protection is also not required. Decisive for the economic success are the lamps, which take care of even light in each of the 20 floors. The vegetables from the plant factories are guaranteed to be hygienic. They contain far less germs after harvesting than regular vegetables that were washed thoroughly.


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