As vertical farming and other forms of modern indoor agriculture continue to evolve and transform the food supply, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service (ARS), USDA’s chief scientific in-house research agency, has launched an intensive study of controlled environment agriculture (CEA) to establish data and science-based metrics and crop production standards for CEA growers, similar to those established with traditional agriculture.
To conduct the Coordinated Agricultural Project (CAP) study, USDA has selected Charleston, SC-based AmplifiedAg as its vertical farm and technology provider.
AmplifiedAg’s hydroponic container-based vertical farming platform and proprietary hardware and software aim to lead USDA’s effort to reconcile key and critical data gaps between CEA and field-grown crops. This research spans crop production, food safety, market quality, and nutrition, in addition to economic analysis on produce access and affordability. Through this quantitative research and scientific findings, USDA will generate fundamental industry standards to sustain and promote CEA industry growth with adaptation to market demands and consumer confidence.
“We are extremely proud that AmplifiedAg has been awarded the opportunity by USDA to provide the technology solution for this monumental analysis about our category and its influence on food systems,” said Don Taylor, founder and CEO of AmplifiedAg. “The outcomes will further validate the efficiencies and benefits that indoor farming offers urban communities, consumers, and the agricultural industry overall.”
“USDA ARS plans to release over 20 white papers during this study that will focus on the category’s product of leafy greens, and will also use AmplifiedAg farms and technology to test a variety of fruit and vegetable production to expand upon industry efficiencies and standards,” added Taylor