In cities like Brisbane and Sydney, shipping containers help solve a lot of the problems modern urban farmers face today. Innovators are repurposing containers into ideal hydroponic growing environments, making it easier to grow food without worrying about a volatile climate. At the same time, they are cutting down on food waste and transportation costs and pollution by producing food closer to consumers.
It’s just one more way that out-of-the-box thinking with shipping containers help save both the environment, and an entire industry.
Drought Resistant Agriculture
Climate change has brought with it plenty of weather extremes. Heat waves, droughts, and even simple changes to expected weather patterns can have a devastating impact on Australia’s farmers. Instead of remaining vulnerable to less predictable weather, some in the agriculture industry, like third-generation farmer James Pateras, are turning to containerism and hydroponic farming.
Pateras says, “We can grow 365 days a year and are able to control the plants’ biology and environment, so by doing that we are eliminating the possibility of any pathogens coming into the farm and don’t have to rely on the next rain event.”
Farmers can plant vertical gardens within shipping containers, which can be modified to include the right ventilation, lighting, hydration and growing spaces.
It’s a brilliant use of shipping containers that goes beyond practical innovation. This is sustainability at its best. If weather patterns continue to change, causing more droughts, temperature fluctuations and other extremes, in the future more farmers could depend on containers in order to grow enough fresh produce to meet demand.
Gardens From Shipping Containers Help Support Urban Growing
This trend is also a smart farming technique for urban growing. The use of shipping containers help farmers create modular, hydroponic farms close to urban centres. Being able to get food to consumers faster because of proximity means produce is fresher – less will have the chance to rot and go to waste.
Also, container growers use less fuel to transport their produce shorter distances, which means fewer CO2 emissions.
You may not decide to buy a used shipping container to create a backyard herb garden just yet, but this is one innovation you may want to watch. Every time you can buy local, or at least closer to home, you’re making a positive impact on the environment whilst at the same time, supporting the agriculture industry’s innovators who are looking for sustainable solutions that will benefit everyone. If you live in Brisbane, Melbourne, or other cities, find out if your local store or favourite restaurant sources any of their produce from any of Australia’s rising container farmers.
Want to learn more about what can be done with shipping containers? Browse our modified shipping container projects or contact us to learn more.