I think it’s safe to say we love food here in North America. Obesity is through the roof, with a staggering two thirds of Americans over the age of 20 clinically overweight. That’s the highest rate in the world. (You can even view, in real-time, a counter that tallies the amount of money spent on obesity-related diseases in the U.S.)
Obesity aside, across much of the continent, food is approached as more than a necessity – It’s sometimes seen as a luxury item.
We fuss and critique food with as much passion as we do albums, movies and works of art.
Unfortunately, not everyone around the globe has the opportunity to approach food in this fashion. In fact, some people don’t even get food, much less the super hand-crafted whatevers we all drool over in fancy restaurants and on TV.
An estimate from the World Food Programme puts the number of people without enough food to “lead a healthy, active life” at one in nine people across the globe.
The increase in global population doesn’t exactly help things, either, with estimates from BASF Crop Protection predicting that between 2005 and 2030, the amount of farmable land per capita will shrink by nearly 20%.
So what do we do when we run out of farmable land?
Forward Thinking Architecture, a development company in Spain, has a plan.
Smart Floating Farms could very well be the agricultural wave of the future, with the scalable and replicable technology able to adapt to the world’s agricultural needs as they change.
Many of the world’s largest cities, including New York and Toronto, are located near large bodies of water, meaning these floating farms could in theory be modified to suit the needs of various metropolitan centers.
What’s perhaps even more remarkable about these floating farms is their self-regulating ability.
Instead of relying on soil to grow plants, they use what is known as hydroponics, through which plants are grown using mineral nutrients in water.
The top layer of the floating farms is even solar panelled to truly make use of the space they occupy.
What’s even cooler about the Smart Floating Farms is that they also have the potential to reduce emissions from existing means of food transportation that we rely on in the agriculture industry.
You can get involved with the Smart Floating Farms initiative via their website here.