The plant factory meaning
The plant factory is an efficient agricultural system that realizes the annual planned production of crops in vertical three-dimensional space under completely enclosed or semi-enclosed conditions and through high-precision environmental control. Due to the full use of modern industrial, biological engineering, and information technology, plant factories are highly technically intensive. Over the years, they have been internationally recognized as the most advanced development stage of facility agriculture, are one of the important indicators to measure the high-tech level of a country’s agriculture, and have been highly valued by all countries in the world.
The term plant factory was first used by Japanese professional societies and media and was gradually adopted by some East Asian countries such as Japan, China, and South Korea. After 2009, the concept of “植物工場” began to be accepted and adopted by some European and American countries. At present, the plant factory has become a regular professional name.
The plant factory advantage (over traditional plant production methods (open fields, greenhouses, or greenhouses).
- The environment (light, temperature, humidity, CO2 concentration, nodule nutrition, etc.) is completely controllable, not limited by or rarely restricted by external natural conditions, and can achieve balanced annual production and stable supply as planned；
- The utilization rate of unit land resources is high, and the vertical space in three-dimensional cultivation can make the yield per unit area reach tens or even hundreds of times that of open-field production.No pesticides are used, there is no heavy metal pollution in the soil, and the products are clean and safe;
- No use of pesticides, labor-saving operation, high degree of mechanization and automation;
- The working environment is relatively comfortable and can attract the younger generation to farm；
- It is not bound by land and can be produced on non-arable land；
- It can be built around the city or in the urban area to achieve nearby production and sales, greatly shorten the transportation distance from the place of origin to the market, and reduce logistics costs and carbon emissions.
Based on the above unique advantages, plant factories are considered to be an important means for countries around the world to solve the food security problems caused by insufficient population growth and labor shortage in the new era.
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