This time, CITIES is checking out what is going on on a global scale. Plantagon, one of world’s first company devoting itself to the production of vertical farming, is the host, which gently welcomed several professionals from the US, from Holland, China, Singapore, Japan and The Emirates. Students and professionals are coming here from the rest of Europe: CITIES approaches local food systems as a local issue, but as many other local issues, here in Linköping we realize how much global attention is gaining. The main goal of the Summit is to discuss the beneficial effects of vertical farming on a global scale. It is interesting for us to understand which are the reasons behind thinking global, which are the innovative approaches and the directions the speakers will bring us to, hoping to bring ideas and innovative assumptions back to the local scale, where CITIES loves to practice.
Expectations are high: the Summit will address the needs of new forms of cooperation, new business models, new organizational models. Together with the need of an inspired academic community, business and society, with the common goal to create a joint platform for technological market driven developments.
Anna Belman is the moderator, which underlines that this is the first time she works on this subject, considered to be the ultimate innovative frontier of her work as moderator. On Stage we find the Chairman of the City Executive Board of the city of Linköping, which underline the local effort to focus on urban agriculture and sustainable redevelopment as a new business opportunity. The main subject is the production of vertical greenhouses, mentioning that Sweden is upfront, when it comes to green technology (biogas driven buses, proving that it is possible to combine business environment with sustainability). Also Elisabet Nilsson, The Governor of the Ostergotland region, is describing the prosperity of the area, where very interesting companies are acting on a global scale. “A region with the highest number of engineers per capita, together with a vast agricultural area, making the perfect combination for the development of vertical farming”.
Opening the event, we also see Hans Hassle, from Plantagon, the hosting company, celebrating its 5th anniversary. The plan to develop a vertical farm is there, all the technical requirements have been met, the architectural compositions have been designed, and the location is perfect for a the creation of a virtuoso circle of reuse of resources. The only issue is bureaucracy; the authorities will soon give the “go” to the construction. Linköping is considered to be a stretegical location because the vertical farm will be connected to a biogas plant, creating a smart foodsystem to reuse the heat generated by the other recycling plants: that the ultimate goal of this company, not only vertical greenhouse production. The other important aspect to be taken into consideration by the company are knowledge transfer, but especially to support the local community and make them understand that Food Cycle Innovation is one of the new challenges of Linköping.
During the Summit, CITIES had the pleasure to share 1 to 1 conversations with the k-note speakers. The interviews are all on our Bambuser Channel , check it out to see the faces behind global urban farming innovation of 2013.
Unfortunately, we did not have the proper technical equipment to record the audio properly, this is why we transcribed all the contents in our following blog posts. All our the interviews are readable, watchable and available for comments on fb and twitter #UASUMMIT