Benefits of Controlled Environment Agriculture for Sustainable Farming

With a growing population, and surging climate change affecting the environment around us, we are trying to upgrade the way of our civilization towards sustainability. We are changing numerous things and turning the world into a productive, sustainable reservoir of life and hope. For example, we are turning towards solar energy, solar production of electricity to protect ourselves and our emptying fuel reservoirs. Similarly, we have a food production crisis, with increasing demands and decreasing arable land. Worry not because the solution is already at our doors; it’s Controlled Environment Agriculture.

Controlled Environment Agriculture, as the name suggests, is agriculture or farming where you manually control the environment. However, the world has come so far that technology has enabled control of the setting to boost health farming. According to the research report by Markntel Advisors, titled “Global Controlled Environment Agriculture Market: Forecast (2022-27)”, various technological advancements and their adoption in the agricultural sector have led to the emergence of more innovative farming solutions and equipment to attain healthy crops and higher output.

The Weather May Change Outside, But CEA Would Ensure Growth and Production

In farming, one of the vital and controlling factors is the weather. Unfortunately, we have no control over the weather; it may or may not be favorable to the crop or vegetable you are farming for, and it may even destroy the farm. But this worry is left outside with the weather when you enter the controlled environment for agriculture, planting the crop or vegetables you aim for. With a consistent optimum indoor environment, the quality and quantity of the product would be on par with your expectation, eliminating any occurrence of weather issues.

What About Sunlight?

We all know that sunlight is very essential for the growth of crops and vegetables. But, changing temperatures due to climate change could harm your farm, and you can’t always prevent or protect the farm from excessive sunlight. Although sunlight does them more good than harm, therefore, or indoor farms, we utilize LED growing lights. These artificial lights provide plants with all the nutrients they get from the sun. Moreover, these lights can be controlled, meaning you can manage and authorize how the plants grow when the flowers blossom and even the taste by varying the light spectrum in different growth stages.

Complete Protection of Your Crops: Minimal Damage

Since the plants and farm are now inside, you are protected from harmful outdoor elements. Numerous elements are affecting the quality of your produce. These include climate changes, pollution, dust particles, hazardous weather, pests, etc. This minimizes the susceptibility of your crops to getting damaged. Along with protecting your produce, you are also saving your resources; for instance, CEA requires less water and land.

More Nutrients for Your Crops and You: Hydroponics and Aquaponics

The numerous farming methods in CEA ensures advanced ways that the plants and crop receive all the required nutrition. For instance, in Hydroponics, plants are grown without soil as a medium while water, nutrients, and oxygen are delivered to the plants, nutrients directly to the roots. While in Aeroponics, more oxygen is given through roots to help the plants perform better. In addition, they receive nutrients from a mist containing nutrients and water. Similarly, there is Aquaponics, where fishes and plants form an ecosystem. All these systems provide a controlled environment of growth for the plants.

How Do You Achieve the Above Benefits?

Numerous practices, equipment, technology, and rules are at play, which helps you achieve the above benefits. In a simpler sense, these tools comprise the whole controlled environment farming system. For example, you control humidity by using dehumidifiers or humidifiers as required and control the nutrition intake in plants by regulating the water amount in the atmosphere. In addition, temperature control affects the humidity level and heating, cooling, or ventilating when required depending on outdoor weather. Apart from maintaining a stable environment in warm or cold weather, it also offsets and protects the farm from the heat created by lighting.

Cause of Controlled Environment Agriculture

There are several reasons why Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) has become increasingly popular in recent years. One of the main causes is the need to address the challenges of traditional agriculture, such as climate change, limited land availability, and soil degradation. Controlled Environment Agriculture enables farmers to grow crops in a controlled environment that is not affected by external factors such as weather and pests, resulting in higher yields and consistent quality.

Additionally, Controlled Environment Agriculture allows for year-round crop production, eliminating the seasonal limitations of traditional agriculture. This can help meet the growing demand for fresh produce, particularly in urban areas where access to locally-grown, fresh fruits and vegetables is limited. Finally, CEA can also reduce the negative impact of agriculture on the environment by minimizing water and pesticide use and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Overall, Controlled Environment Agriculture provides a sustainable and efficient alternative to traditional agriculture that can help address many of the challenges facing our food systems today.

In A Nut Shell

CEA is the next thing the whole agriculture sector is adapting to; it’s the next move that would make an ever-lasting impact on our food situation. Besides, with increasing pollution and changing weather, it comes out as the healthiest option, where the quality of the product could be maintained. We need such a resource now more than ever, with decreasing air and water quality. As consumer support such sustainable and productive initiatives, we should raise awareness about CEA as an alternative method and support the farms by buying such nutrient-rich vegetables and food, simultaneously benefitting ourselves.

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