The challenges are discerning and developing yet-to-be-built business models, penetrating markets, and working with government to incent positive change to streamline processes and establish standards and best practices. As with any pioneer period, things are hazy and unclear – food safety, advanced technology, novel food production, science, innovation, new architecture, and government recognition must all be considered as important components of the global trend. In an industry that is already spurring a new generation of entrepreneurs, Vertical Farming has the power to help transform the existing food supply chains by attracting future farmers that can innovate with technology and bold risk taking.
These change makers need supportive policies to pave the way for mainstream adoption and market entrance. The upcoming US Farm Bill provides an opportunity to discuss challenges and solutions in policy such as streamlined access to the USDA, tax incentives for farmers, manufacturers, and developers alike, novel new food production systems in commercial and residential zoning, tax incentives for efficient food production in suburban spaces, investment in research and development, connecting rural agriculture with metropolitan areas for education and mentorship – to name a few of the crucial issues before us.
The AVF and its partners announce the following speakers at the upcoming summit:
- Sonny Ramaswamy NIFA
- Bob Van Heuvelen VH STRATEGIES/URBAN AG COALITION
- Stan Vangilder SOUTHERN COMPANY
- Roberta Andersen GLOBAL GAP
- Gertjan Meeuws HERE THERE AND EVERYWHERE
- Travis Williams FLUENCE BIOENGINEERING
- Eric Ijtema CERTHON
- Charles Wilson WORLD FOOD PRESERVATION CENTER
- Natasha Snellens PRIVA
- Dr. Bob Whitaker PRODUCE MARKETING ASSOCIATION
- Wim Grootscholten RIJK ZWAAN