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All in Urban
Pittsburgh, the western Pennsylvania city once a hub for soot-spewing steel and coke mills, is about to become home to the nation’s largest urban farm. A 23-acre urban farm project named the Hilltop Urban Farm is set to open in 2019 just two miles from downtown Pittsburgh
The rooftop farm, using 1200 sq m of hydroponics, will produce 60-80 tonnes of mixed vegetables a year – largely leaves such as lettuce and spinach – retailing to diners at around £8 per kilo, compared to around £25 per kilo in supermarket
The factory, with an area of over 10,000 square meters, is a project of Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com.
Singapore, which imports 90% of the food it consumes, is making concerted efforts to produce and store its own food, as it seeks greater food security in the face of external threats such as climate change and pressures from neighboring Malaysia
Hydroponic and vertical farming systems have long been touted as a solution to the problem of land use by agriculture, since much of the arable land is already taken and 31% of total global rice, wheat, and maize production in eastern Asia and northwest Europe has already plateaued.
The company, which lies two hours west of Washington, is disrupting agriculture from the bottom up, just as Amazon/Whole Foods, Instacart, FreshDirect and others are changing the way people buy groceries from the top down