100 years ago, if you suggested that climate change would one day threaten our way of life, you'd be laughed off the stage. Today, climate change is increasing global hunger and bringing 100 million people into poverty by 2030.
One ramification of climate change is fewer resources, such as water, nutrients, and arable land, to grow our food. Innovative solutions are in dire need.
As PRI writes:
"Agriculture is the 'Goldilocks industry' — the weather should not be too hot or too cold, and rainfall must be 'just right.'"
With Earth's population expected to exceed 11 billion by the end of the century, the challenge to feed everyone is immeasurably difficult, requiring creative, diverse solutions.
One potential solution is vertical farming, which, as it sounds, is the practice of growing food in vertically stacked layers, which could be specifically designed to do so, or be part of another structure like a skyscraper or shipping container.
One Berlin-based venture, klimazone, is working to simplify vertical farming and ensure broad access to it. With the explosive growth of data and rising use-cases for AI, klimazone uses technology to tackle three main areas: Climate on-demand, demand-oriented farming, and precision plant monitoring.
Basically, what this means is that the food you eat could soon be coming from vertical farms.
Personally, it's exciting to me that minds in design, agriculture, AI, and entrepreneurship are coming together to create solutions that matter.
Startups are fascinating spaces to find out-of-the-box thinking at work, especially when applied to sustainability and other problems that impact billions.
A number of other startups are working on this, including Urban Crop Solutions, AeroFarms, and neoFarms. These businesses are all great examples of social entrepreneurship, basically "doing good and doing well." Making money, but keeping an eye on impact.
Whether it's agriculture, financial equity, women's empowerment, or any other area of impact, any venture can become a social venture.