It’s hard to fathom the devastation wrought by the wildfires in the Western United States: five million acres burned, thousands displaced, and more than 30 have died. Agriculture is, of course, deeply affected. Farms burn, harvesting is dialed back, farmworkers struggle to breathe, paychecks shrink, irrigation is interrupted, smoke-filled skies dim the daylight, plants get leggy, crop growth slows, open-headed plants like romaine lettuce collect potentially toxic ash that falls from the sky, and wine grapes are ruined by smoke taint. It is a difficult time for farmers on the West Coast. Our thoughts are with them as they fight through these challenges.
Our hearts break for farmers, farmworkers and others enduring these and a myriad of other difficult circumstances related to the wildfires. Uncertainties like drought, wildfire, climate change and irregular precipitation – whether soot, hail, snow or too much rain – are among the many reasons why we, at AgriFORCE, have chosen to bring our farming into a carefully controlled environment.
Although it will always make sense to farm fields, we’re committed to providing an option for a cost-effective, reliable, climate-resistant alternative that can be built anywhere – even in locations that deal with extreme weather.
Through our precision ecosystem that we are set to refine to grow produce, we are committed to working to improve agricultural yield, nutrition, flavor, water conservation, energy efficiency, productivity as well as profit and prices. The work that we are doing is designed to make it possible to transform any piece of open land – whether a rolling field or a parking lot – into a neighborhood farm that has the ability to supply clean fruits and vegetables to nearby stores, restaurants, hospitals, schools and homes.
Farming is particularly challenging today, and feeding the world will remain a formidable challenge for years to come. But, as with other human achievements throughout history, there are things we can do to solve our most difficult problems. Ingenuity and innovation are the way.
Ingo Mueller, CEO for AgriFORCE Growing Systems, is currently working from his home office in North Vancouver, British Columbia. He continues to connect with the AgriFORCE team, strategic partners and others around the world – whether that is in California, New York or several other states where AgriFORCE has business interests. He is also in constant contact with our partners in Europe, as we raise the flag there for AgriFORCE and the company’s unique (and proprietary) facility design and automated growing system.
The Notes from the CEO happen when Ingo gets a bit of time to share his perspective on the world of AgTech, the AgriFORCE team, work/life balance and his vision for creating positive change in the world.