11 ways to reduce vertical farm operating costs

While indoor vertical farms allow farming entrepreneurs to grow multiple crops in a smaller footprint than traditional agriculture, to reduce vertical farm operating costs there are still short and long-term financial considerations that should be addressed when planning and operating your urban agriculture venture. The following are 11 recommendations to reduce operating expenses in your vertical farm: 

The first one is, location: Of the advantages of indoor farming, finding the right location might be the most appetizing. Reducing food miles and bringing food security to urban environments is a sustainable farming method that everyone can support. But, before you make a commitment to your farm’s location, it is important to understand your business’ needs. 

The following questions will all impact your business and its ability to generate a return on investment: What are your town/city’s zoning regulations? Where does your product go and how does it get there?
Can you get enough electricity (and other utilities) and how much does it cost? What are the labor costs and regulations for your town/city?


Cody Bourget

Secondly, proper spending is needed. In CEA there is a correlation between your initial capital and eventual operational costs. Investment in technological advances can set your farm up with automation and machine learning, thereby increasing production and reducing labor requirements on tasks such as seeding, harvesting, or cleaning.

While cheaper options may seem more appealing, a higher-priced farm will come with more support and warranties on equipment, such as lighting and irrigation. Cutting costs on these items can cost you more in the long run. 

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