The Neighborhood Harvest, a local farming company, has seen a spike in business during the COVID-19 pandemic. Data shows that they delivered over 800 weekly shipments to the northeastern Virginia-area since the beginning of April, as opposed to 400 weekly shipments before the pandemic. A company spokesperson says this growth is due to the need for food during stay-at-home orders and due to the development of new products. The growth of The Neighborhood Harvest stood the test of this brief economic recession.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Neighborhood Harvest has seen a sharp spike in delivery orders since the coronavirus pandemic began.
  • The Neighborhood Harvest now makes about 400 deliveries to Williamsburg each week, and about 800 weekly deliveries to its entire service area.
  • The Neighborhood Harvest has added new employees — many from area restaurants that have closed during the pandemic — and a variety of new products.

“The Neighborhood Harvest delivers organic produce, meats, dairy and more from local small businesses and farms.”

Read more: https://www.dailypress.com/virginiagazette/va-vg-nh-pandemic-0617-20200616-sdbe7xnwvrad3acfu6sji2y3ga-story.html

Interest in roses was with me since childhood, from visiting my grandparents in Vermont, through living as a teenager in Connecticut and New York City. I ventured on a rose planting spree when I moved to Maine, and soon my garden became a place to visit. The old, ancient varieties of roses are the most popular. Since my beginnings with roses, I started focusing more on sustainable growth, without insecticides. My rose garden grows and so does the interest of my neighbors and friends in visiting the garden.

Key Takeaways:

  • Pat Leuchtman got her start growing roses after reading “Onward and Upward in the Garden.”
  • Leuchtman has focused on growing older rose variants, including the ancient and hardy Rosa glauca.
  • The Antique Rose Emporium in Texas is noteworthy for its long-blooming and gorgeous Thomas Affleck rose.

“With very little prodding from new friends, I began to plant a rose walk and soon planned rose viewings at the end of June.”

Read more: https://www.recorder.com/Between-the-Rows-34848471

The palm oil industry is one of the major players of deforestation in Asia, which contributes adversely to climate change. This is because palm agriculture reduces biodiversity, since it’s usually the only crop planted in a field. But, there is hope for a more sustainable palm oil industry, as the fertile lands of Africa have shown promise. To ensure these new agricultural endeavors are sustainable, farmers must focus on maintaining biodiversity through intercropping, as well as reducing waste that is generated from the farming process.

Key Takeaways:

  • People think that palm forests are terrible for the environment, but it could be grown sustainably in Africa
  • To be more sustainable, people can plant other crops in the palm fields for more diversity
  • Importantly, local legislation needs to take these things into account for sustainable palm farming

“Palm is often grown as a monoculture – where it is the only species grown in a large plantation, and plantations often replace native forests.”

Read more: https://www.miragenews.com/could-africa-have-a-sustainable-palm-industry/

In England, the police discovered an interesting surprise when they were called to a fishmongers. Originally, the Metropolitan Police were informed of a water leak from an apartment above a fish shop, but when they knocked on the door, no one greeted them. That’s when the fire department busted down the door and they discovered a large hydroponic grow hour with 300 illegal marijuana plants. Not only was this a big drug bust, but the police also found the leak, which posed aa a fire hazard for the whole building.

Key Takeaways:

  • On 19 June, Metropolitan police responded to a report that water was leaking out of a fishmongers shop, and found that the water originated from the flat above.
  • The police knocked on the door of the flat, and began to fear that a medical emergency had occurred.
  • Although police are continuing to investigate the indoor marijuana farm, there is currently no reason to believe that the fishmongers are involved in any illegal activity.

“Firefighters helped the officers force their way in only to find a sophisticated cannabis farm of more 300 plants.”

Read more: https://www.mylondon.news/news/north-london-news/police-stumble-across-huge-cannabis-18457845

The United Arab Emirates has been attempting to boost agriculture within the country. A company called Smart Acres will attempt to help the country boost agriculture by opening a Hydroponic Vertical farm in the third quarter of 2020. Smart Acres is set to expand throughout the country in the following years. Smart Acres helps to enable growers to grow food more easily by using their Internet of Things technology. With this kind of farming the plants will be stacked on top of each other and nutrients reaches the plants through a water-based solvent that enters the roots.

Key Takeaways:

  • Smart Acres is introducing a new vertical farm to the United Arab Emirates in an effort to boost the agriculture in the country.
  • The hydroponic vertical farming plant is expected to finally launch in the third-quarter of 2020.
  • The farming plant will utilize vertical farming, which requires crops to be stacked on top of each other.

“The hydroponics usually generate high quality of crops, and with IoT based technology, the growers could easily grow their produce.”

Read more: https://krishijagran.com/agriculture-world/uae-based-company-smart-acres-to-launch-hydroponic-vertical-farming-in-2020/

Point Reyes has enjoyed its status of a farming model thanks to its landscape suitable for agriculture. The community has a responsibility to continue with the vision of Point Reyes as a primer on how environmentalists and farmers, all members of the local community, can work together to protect both the environment and food sources. The park has an opportunity to show that sustainability is an important part of agriculture and that it is critical to ecosystems on local levels. Local farms are perfectly positioned to educate the new generations of urbanites about sustainable practices. There has been tension between the environmentalists and agriculturalists lately, but pandemic has shown that we have to rely on each other, and this may be a perfect time to mend these relationships for greater, common good.

Key Takeaways:

  • The ecosystem of rangelands and forests put the park in a position to show the value of sustainable agriculture.
  • Cattle can be difficult for the land to handle, but they help repair soil and grasslands when they are managed with intention.
  • A solution to erosion caused by overgrazing has been to implement rotational grazing.

“As a community and as a culture, we have the responsibility to follow through with the original vision for this place as an example of environmentalists, community members and farmers working together to honor the environment and to protect our local food sources.”

Read more: https://www.marinij.com/2020/06/06/marin-voice-point-reyes-a-model-for-healthy-local-sustainable-agriculture/

Western Illinois University has recently obtained a federally funded grant that will provide opportunities for academic community to conduct research on hydroponics, with specific focus on lettuce production. The grant calls for implementation of hyper-spectral reflectance, a technology that aids hydroponic growth. The beginnings of the research were humble, as the student-built system was used, but soon expertise was acquired to take the next step. Grant will provide funds to construction of a system that will have double the capacity of the existing one. In addition to research, the new hydroponic capability will provide an opportunity to grow food for campus students.

Key Takeaways:

  • Federally-funded researchers at Western Illinois University are working on a new hydroponics system made out of cheap materials like PVC.
  • The WIU research team is now using their hydroponics system, along with a special nutrient solution, to grow “Rex” butterhead lettuce more efficiently.
  • The WIU team says that the lettuce grown with their hydroponics system matures more quickly than regular lettuce, does not require pesticide, and also tastes better than traditionally-grown lettuce.

“Henning and Atherton are now attempting to improve nutrient recommendations for hydroponic lettuce in order to save producers both time and input costs.”

Read more: https://www.mcdonoughvoice.com/news/20200616/federal-ag-grant-to-elevate-hydroponic-lettuce-production-at-wiu

The Hydroponic farm in Robbinsville has not been able to have volunteers work there due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Hope Cahill has been giving virtual tours to show people the utility of the new technology. Cahill has hosted multiple virtual tours for schools around the state of New Jersey. The virtual tour serves as a virtual field trip for students. Students learn about the process of setting up the crops and get to learn about the unique features of the farm.

Key Takeaways:

  • The coronavirus outbreak has kept volunteers away from the Robbinsville Hydroponic Farm.
  • The farm can potentially grow over 1,000 mini heads of lettuce per week in a 320 square feet space.
  • The farm’s coordinator has been leading students on virtual tours of the Leafy Green Machine.

“Harvested produce is given to Robbinsville Township schools and the senior center as well as organizations such as Mercer Street Friends for meal programs.”

Read more: https://www.tapinto.net/towns/hamilton-slash-robbinsville/sections/green/articles/robbinsville-bringing-kids-visitors-to-hydroponic-farm-through-virtual-educational-tours

The agriculture and tech company, Willo, is offering its customers a unique farm-to-table opportunity. Using its indoor vertical farms, Willo is now allowing consumers to purchase a plot of the farm, and when the produce is ready to be harvested, they will deliver it directly to the consumer’s door. Subscribers can purchase this plan for $99 per month or a simple one-time purchase for only $49. The new direct-to-consumer farming initiative is one of the first of its kind, and will surely educate customers on the food supply chain.

Key Takeaways:

  • For $99 a month, those within 20 miles of Santa Clara can subscribe to an exclusive plot in Willo’s farm.
  • Fresh produce from its farm will also be used to create ready-made plant-based meals for the homeless.
  • Willo has plans to expand its model into San Diego, Los Angeles, New York and Washington D.C.

“Founded by brothers Samuel and John Bertram, Willo’s personalized cultivation and delivery service connects consumers directly to their own plot in Willo’s local vertical farm.”

Read more: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/willo-direct-consumer-vertical-farming-130000818.html

According to the Greenbelt foundation, the fruit and vegetable sector could boost Ontario’s economy by one hundred million dollars if there is more local production. Local production would lead to less dependency on imported fruits and vegetables. After Covid-19, Canadians and politicians could emerge with a new sensitivity to food-security, and this could lead to an increase in local production for fruits and vegetables. With more government funding for food and agriculture, GDP could increase by two hundred and fifty million dollars for provinces and create three thousand four hundred new jobs.

Key Takeaways:

  • Ontario could recover better from the pandemic if it focuses on producing more fruits and vegetables.
  • One way to do this is to investigate vertical farming as a way of growing.
  • In the US, farm workers have a high rate of covid-19 because of poor safety.

“For example, there’s opportunity to increase the market share of Ontario-grown fresh grapes from 1.6 per cent of annual consumption to 8.3 per cent by planting another 3,720 acres of grape vines.”

Read more: https://ipolitics.ca/2020/06/10/the-sprout-increase-in-greenbelt-production-could-boost-ontarios-economic-recovery-by-100-million/