Building and Land Costs
In urban locations, the areas designated for vertical farms are often quite expensive. This is not an issue relegated to land vertical farming alone. Rather, the general prices for land are often high in urban centers than in other locations. For this, reason, there are the chances that will be a limiting factor in the growth of vertical skyscrapers. Although vertical farming is among the types of farming that will need the least amounts of space, you still need space for a considerable amount of produce to be possible. To the least, you will need a whole room to run the vertical farming unit and those do not come easy in urban centers.
Although the transportation costs of the produce of verticals farming could be considerably less than in other types if agriculture, the amount of energy consumed for the artificial lighting with the climate control when in a vertical farm will add greatly to the costs of operations. Also, starting a vertical farm may require some settings up and running costs that go well beyond the basic energy costs. Keep in mind that the costs of the energy to be used can only be met by the benefits from the farming routine. In fact, if it does not make economic sense, then one better not attempt for purposes beyond home and domestic needs.
Controversy with the USDA Organic Certification
It is quite unclear when or if there will ever be an agreement on the issue of crops that have been produced from a vertical farm being certified as organic. Most agricultural experts are of the opinion that a certified organic food will involve the entire soil ecosystem besides the natural system. Simply having a lack of herbicides and pesticides will not make a crop organic. One will have to wait for the settlement of this debate to decide whether vertical farming products can be said to be organic. So far, the strict definition of the word organic food.
Limited Number of Crop Species
The available model for the crops to be grown in the vertical farms focuses on crops that are of a high-value, rapid-growth, small footprints, and quick turnovers like basil, lettuce, and other similar salad items. The slower-growing variants, and the grains will not be as profitable when a commercial vertical farming system is employed when compared to the conventional farming.
Crops that are in need of insect pollination are quite at a disadvantage when it comes to a vertical farm as the insects are not included in the growth environment. This means that those plants that need pollination will thus require to be pollinated manually; an aspect which will force the farmer to have more people carrying out the cumbersome pollination. This aspect will also require that the operational costs are considerably higher than what one would need were the plants outdoors. While it saves on costs, it also increases them in ways other types of farming will not.
Conclusion of disadvantages of vertical farming at home
One can note that the vertical farms found in urban centers are a moderately new idea although the interest in the use of this approach is stressing growing with the number of verticals firms in the United States going up each passing year. There are many variations of the vertical farms that are being tested all across the world with new innovations and technologies bent on increasing energy efficiency with the profit margins for the commercial vertical farms out there. On their part, the farmers will be looking for ways of increasing the output especially for domestic farming.
In the near future, most of the vertical farms will be focused on the high-return with short-rotation plants like the salad greens with the target market being the restaurants. However, for the homes, people will be focusing on getting the most from the least inputs. Whether the vertical farms become more popular in America’s cities not certain. However, the clever vertical farms at present that are under construction or in production are under close observation from urban planners and others.