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In the hunt for sustainable food systems to compliment overcrowded city living it's not often that deliciousness gets considered alongside all other perfomatory requirements, like input and crop yield. Until now that is.
LOKAL is the prototype for a new living and growing salad bar using a vertical hydroponic farming system that was recently presented at London Design Week
While it's not the first vertical hyrdoponic farming system we've come across, it's one of the few that talks about flavour and nutrition. After all, it's not just about growing more food locally, but also "food that tastes great and is more nutritious, healthy and fresh all year round,” explains Guillaume Charny-Brunet, Director of Innovation Strategy,
Visitors to the Design Fair were treated to a choice of three salad dishes that had been grown indoors using the system, each of which came with a salad dressing made with spirulina, a kind of microalgae - and the overiding feedback was 'delicious.'
The prototype it is not yet ready just yet but the SPACE 10 team behind it think it's a promising way to start further exploration into whether this could become part of a new, local supply chain allowing us to grow more tasy food indoors, year round.
Why Hyrodoponic Farming?
Hydroponic farming allows microgreens to be grown without soil, using nutrient-enriched water, LED lights and computerised automation meaning microgreens can grow up to three times faster than in fields, using 90 percent less water. Ultimately it's method that produces much less spoilage and can be done locally, making it an interesting factor in city living.
All photo credits: Rory Gardiner and Nicklas Ingemann