Bermuda farmers dismayed about government's vertical farming plans

“Large-scale vertical farming will not revitalize growth, the economy or labur on the island because the set-up and operating costs of vertical farms for leafy greens are prohibitive in Bermuda,” the Bermuda Farmer’s Association (BFA) said.

The BFA asserted that they were not fully consulted before the Government announced that funds have been earmarked “to support the development of a vertical farm project,” and said they are “dismayed to see Government’s insistence on moving forward.” “As stated in the articles, Minister Hayward laid out a recovery plan as part of Government’s four lead initiatives to ‘kick start growth, the economy and labor,” a statement from the organization said.

“One of those plans Minister Hayward said, was ongoing work to make vertical farming a reality. He said, ‘The vertical farming facility is being acted upon, with a potential location for a large-scale vertical farming facility under review and financial details in development.’ He said the vertical farm project was to ‘facilitate food security, lower food costs, develop farm crops and create jobs in a new, evolved area of the agricultural industry.’

“The BFA has already engaged with the Government on the subject of vertical farming and specifically on solving the problem of the leafy greens shortfall in Bermuda in September 2021. This was in response to then Minister Wayne Furbert’s vertical farm business concept. At that time the BFA, of whom many members already grow crops in alternative, evolved agricultural methods, discussed with the Minister the specific reasons why large-scale vertical farming for leafy greens will not work in Bermuda."

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