Let’s Talk Climate Tech For Agriculture

Flat World Partners
5 min readFeb 1, 2024

About | Mission | Blog

The food industry today has grown to be dysfunctional and unsustainable because food today is much less healthy and natural. That’s why I wanted to write about two “do-gooders” in the space that are using technology to help make great products.

Much of the food that we consume is filled with toxic chemicals, hormones, and nurtured using contaminated water, polluted oxygen, and degraded soil. To combat this, a few companies are creating a revolution in the agriculture sector, fueled by the rise of innovative and complex climate-tech ventures. Because of their outstanding innovation in the US, two of my favorite examples of this are “Plenty” and “Gotham Greens”. They have both addressed the need for sustainable and non-invasive agricultural space, biologically protected and naturally sourced farming products, and disruptive technologies that make food production sustainable both for consumers and the earth.

Since 1982, in the US alone, 31 million acres of agricultural land have been lost to Urban expansion, and many millions more are subject to contaminated soil, toxin-filled water, and a poor level of air quality. “Plenty”, realized this problem before many did, and created in-house, season free, vertical “farms” that yield up to 350x more crops than conventional agriculture spaces. To quantify this even further, “Plenty’s” differentiated design allows them to produce the same amount of crops as a whole soccer pitch would, but in the space of a single goal (goal: 8x6 yards, pitch:130x100 yards). “Plenty” has been fast to raise over 400M from Walmart and Softbank as this venture aims to solve the spacing problem that affects agriculture today while also producing chemical free, sustainable crops. No soil erosion, invasion of wildlife habitats or release of pollutants into the environment.

On the other hand, “Gotham Greens” is not centered in solving the spacing issue in agriculture, rather on educating and providing consumers with healthier, sustainable and local produce. “Gotham Green’s” has developed greenhouses across the US that use 90% less water than traditional agriculture methods. They use 40% less electricity than conventional in-house agriculture businesses, recycle their CO2 and use organisms such as ladybugs to replace pesticides and fight against predators. On top of all of this, they keep the produce local, servicing locations on a same day basis, reducing shipping costs, transportation emissions and providing fresher and more nutritious produce.

At the end of the day, the agricultural revolution and climate-tech is not a pipedream or an impossible goal, rather, it is about expanding upon and improving past technologies and ways of thinking. “Gotham Greens” innovated on the Greenhouse, a technology invented by the Romans in 30 A.D, and modernized it to fight the problems that we experience in the world today. The vertical garden was created almost 100 years ago, “Plenty”, mass produced it and designed a garden that could yield produce all year round. They found out that improving what we eat and how we grow it is not rocket science, rather it takes commitment, outside-the-box thinking and looking at the past to improve our future.

And, as a lesson from these two ventures, climate-tech can be created at home. You too can build a vertical garden on your roof or grow lettuce for your family in a greenhouse in your backyard. Accessing these technologies or even building them yourself has never been easier. In the world today, our food systems, supply chains, and ways of living are threatened by the increase in population and degradation of our natural environment. It is no longer up to politicians or big conglomerates to save the world, we need more “Plenty’s” and “Gotham Green’s” who innovate, solve, and most importantly care.

Ignacio de Castro, Research Intern

Climate-tech ventures across the world continue to expand, even in urban areas in Israel.

Find easy DIY videos on YouTube that teach you how to build vertical gardens and greenhouses at home. Try to support climate-tech ventures by buying their produce at your local supermarket or just giving them a try once in a while. For example, you can find “Plenty” vegetables at almost all Whole Food locations.

Try out restaurants near home that are supporting climate-tech ventures and buying their produce, such as Vedge in Philadelphia.

This newsletter is intended solely for informational purposes, and should not be construed as investment/trading advice and are not meant to be a solicitation or recommendation to buy, sell, or hold any securities mentioned. Any reproduction or distribution of this document, in whole or in part, or the disclosure of its contents, without the prior written consent of Flat World Partners is prohibited

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