- Vertical farming in Africa was estimated to be worth US$0.57 billion in 2021
- The agriculture sector's contribution to GDP decreased from 10.14 percent in 2019 to 7.61 percent in 2020
- Vertical farming is expected to expand at a rapid rate of 26.4 percent per year, reaching US$1.86 billion by 2026.
The current rainy season in Zimbabwe has not been the best. Lack of rain affects various parts of the economy in addition to being the main cause of blackouts in the nation. Many meteorological experts predict that a drought will soon arrive. The rains have been erratic, which has proved terrible for farmers that only use rainwater. Agriculture is one source of income for many individuals in Zimbabwe because the country has a significant informal sector presence. For farmers who depend on seasonal rainfall, the rainy season is crucial.
The World Bank reports that Zimbabwe has seen a sharp decline in agricultural output and rising food prices, leading to an increase in food insecurity. Therefore, a long-term solution to the problems brought on by erratic rainfall is needed.
Now is the time for farmers and agribusinesses to plan and create farming techniques that use less rainfall. Relying on natural rainfall has in the past led to disappointment for farmers. Due to the unpredictable nature of weather patterns brought on by climate change, farming has grown to be a massive enterprise. Most locations have had occasional rainfall, with the total amount received so far being much less than it was at this time last year.
Climate change has had a substantial impact on agricultural production. The agriculture sector's contribution to GDP decreased from 10.14 percent in 2019 to 7.61 percent in 2020, according to the latest available data. The fundamental cause of this is that most people involved in agriculture solely rely on precipitation. When rainfall is uncertain, crop yields
The Zimbabwean economy is rooted in agricultural productivity, according to the National Economic strategy, NDS1 (National Development Strategy1). Agriculture has an important role in Zimbabwe's long-term economic prosperity.
In this article, we'll look at how farmers and agribusinesses can use vertical farming to protect themselves from irregular rains.
Vertical farming is the process of cultivating crops in layers that are piled vertically. It frequently integrates soilless farming techniques such as hydroponics, aquaponics, and aeroponics, as well as controlled-environment agriculture, which tries to optimize plant development. Buildings, shipping containers, tunnels, and abandoned mine shafts are some of the most frequent structures used to house vertical farming systems. Greenhouses are the most common vertical farming structures in Zimbabwe. According to a survey I conducted, a solid(40m*40m) greenhouse structure for vertical farming can cost between US$4,000 and US$20,000, including basic buildings and storage tank facilities. These prices can be reduced by over 50% if the material used for the greenhouse is wood as opposed to the conventional galvanized steel greenhouses.
Vertical farming in Africa was estimated to be worth US$0.57 billion in 2021, according to Farmers Market SA data, and is expected to expand at a rapid rate of 26.4 percent per year, reaching US$1.86 billion by 2026. Many Zimbabwean farmers are being urged to invest in vertical farming. This market is relatively untapped, and there are advantages to farming vertically. The main advantage of vertical farming is improved crop output over a smaller cultivated area.
Regardless of the benefits and drawbacks of vertical farming, progress must be made. Traditional farming methods will be unable to keep up as the population grows and food prices rise. As a result, vertical agricultural solutions will be necessary. Hydroponics is an excellent alternative for Zimbabwean farmers who don't have access to land or water.
Vertical farmers are already under pressure to deliver an ever-increasing variety of products while maintaining the volume, quality, and nutritional criteria that buyers demand. It's not easy to navigate the drawbacks of agricultural development to meet demand. Vertical farming is the future!