Hydroponic Systems – The Future of Farming? | UMass Dining

Hydroponic Systems – The Future of Farming?
Posted October 07, 2013 in Sustainability by Gifford Delle, Student

A rapidly growing trend in modern agriculture is a method of growing called hydroponics. The utilization and research of hydroponically grown food with has an extensive history, however recently it has been proposed as a solution to the downfalls of modern monoculture farming and as a way to improve our overall food systems. Hydroponic Vegetables are grown without soil in a water-based system that utilizes a mineral nutrient solution. This typically happens in some sort of container based system with the roots submerged in the nutrient solution or a medium such as gravel, clay, or pebbles. So the question remains, “Why?” Why should we transfer much of what we grow in soil to little tanks of water?

Hydroponics is smart because it utilizes space. Much of our produce comes from far away parts of the US and abroad, so growing something in a small space without having to import saves on energy output. The process of shipping is one that takes a toll on the environment. Hydroponic systems reflect that space is important. Food travels many miles by means of heavy diesel trucks and cargo ships and by increasing the use of hydroponics we potentially increase our ability to grow locally, and utilize space. The space that is utilized can be small and highly productive.

via Hydroponic Systems – The Future of Farming? | UMass Dining.

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