The Conex box container was created and used to ship and store supplies during the Korean War. Since then, it’s found a new purpose: The Conex box farm.
These farms are part of the revolutionary indoor farming movement.
Indoor farming isn’t new.
But much of the technology that allows us to repurpose sunless structures like warehouses and shipping containers into indoor farms is still developing.
As we shift more and more toward urbanization, indoor farming provides a way of bringing food closer and closer to consumers.
In this article, you’ll learn about the advantages of a Conex box farm.
Conex box farms are particularly suited to urban farming.
Urban farming refers to growing crops in a metropolitan area. Examples of urban farms include indoor farms, rooftop greenhouses, vertical farms, living (edible) walls, community gardens, and more!
Traditional farms are typically far away from the community it feeds. But an urban farm uses proximity to its advantage.
Because Conex farms are compact, they can be stationed on school campuses, behind restaurants, in your backyard, or pretty much anywhere else.
As a result, an aspiring farmer can start a business on their city property, or chefs can grow their own fresh produce for their restaurant.
Since a Conex box farm is still a shipping container, and therefore easily moved, one can be placed in food deserts, bringing fresh food to those who don’t have easy access to it.
Food deserts are urban areas where it’s difficult to find and obtain fresh, nutritious, and affordable food.
Being in the heart of the community, means transportation doesn’t have to be included in the cost of the produce, resulting in cheaper, more accessible food for the people who live near the farm.
As a result, Conex box farms help increase food security by providing access to fresh produce to low-income communities.
At this point, you may be wondering how exactly a shipping container can grow enough produce to feed more than a few people.
It’s actually fairly simple to explain.
Conex box farms use vertical farming methods to grow crops, which require less space than soil.
Vertical farming systems grow up rather than out, using things like towers or shelves to maximize production per square foot.
In fact, some Conex box farms grow up to 30 times as much produce per square foot as traditional field farming.
As a result, these shipping containers have the potential to yield six tons of lettuce per year using only 320 square feet.
Conex box farms grow crops without soil using hydroponic systems.
The type of system in use, will depend on the farm, but our Pure Greens Container Farms use nutrient film technique (NFT) and deep floating technique (DFT) systems.
In an NFT system, crops sit on water tight pipes with their roots in the pipes, while nutrient rich water is circulated throughout, delivering nutrients directly to the roots.
In a DFT system, crops sit on a floating platform with their roots submerged in a reservoir of nutrient rich water.
While these both sound like it requires a lot of water, that’s not the case.
In fact, hydroponic systems use less water than traditional field farming, especially ones that recirculate like NFT systems do.
This is because water is prone to evaporation and uneven distribution in field agriculture. Meanwhile, hydroponic systems reuse water and deliver it directly to the plants.
In fact, hydroponic systems use 10 times less water than field farming does.
For example, our Pure Greens Container Farms use only five gallons of water per day!
That’s less water than the average person uses in one day to go to the bathroom!
A Conex box farm also has far greater control over the growth of crops due to controlled environment agriculture (CEA) technology.
CEA technology allows farmers to cultivate crops without any worry of damaging weather, fluctuating temperatures, climate, or season.
With CEA farmers create near perfect conditions for their plants to grow in, resulting in more consistent and reliable yields without the need for chemical pesticides and herbicides.
Our Pure Greens Container Farms use CEA technology so advanced that it’s fully controllable through an app for your smartphone.
Our system monitors and adjusts carbon dioxide, air and water temperatures, lighting, pH and nutrient levels, and humidity.
As you can see, a Conex box farm is an innovative indoor farming solution.
If you’re interested in learning more about Conex box farms, head over to our website or call us at 602-753-3469.