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Drgrafenbergmd's avatar

What are some differences between today's farms and farms of the future?

Asked by Drgrafenbergmd (387points) February 13th, 2010

What are some differences in farming practices that you can imagine seeing in the future? You can base your answer on your vision of future technology or on the different ways you imagine farms interacting with society. Actually. there is no aspect of farming thats outside of the box. Feel free to use your imagination to take your vision of the future as far out as you want. These answers can be as technical and serious or as ridiculous as you can be, go NUTS!

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26 Answers

sillymichelleyoung's avatar

Today’s farms are starting to become
more technologically advanced. One day perhaps maybe there won’t be farmers, but simply machines doing all the work!

Yay for more couch potatoes~

robmandu's avatar

Marijuana will be the largest legal cash crop in the future.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Hover-combines!
I can’t wait.

Berserker's avatar

KFC Laboratories; a reality.

sillymichelleyoung's avatar

haha i can see marijuana as the biggest legal crop

talljasperman's avatar

solar farms… wind farms… alge farms

sillymichelleyoung's avatar

when i read solar farms i for some reason imagibed cows floating in space suits (i know they dont relate at all but still)

tragiclikebowie's avatar

Hopefully farms will be going BACK in time, when farming was a responsible practice.

sillymichelleyoung's avatar

haha tomacco from simpsons?!???

ETpro's avatar

@tragiclikebowie I’d love to see that coupled with advances in agricultural methods and technology so more and more of the world’s people can go to sleep at night without hunger. I expect great strides to be made by bioengineering as we come to more fully understand how DNA works to self replicate. I know designer genes and designer food terrify many now, and there are serious risks to be assessed and overcome, but I am sure that will come to pass.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

@ETpro I dunno. GMOs scare me. But… if we could have a replicator like in Star Trek, that would be pretty sweet.

lilikoi's avatar

I like the idea of mimicking forest biodiversity (looking at forest ecology and making plant substitutions plant by plant so that you replace what you’d normally see in a forest with an edible alternative that has a similar structure and function) as a more sustainable farming method, however this would be much more energy intensive (at least for the moment)...

SeventhSense's avatar

The agricultural business models today which are essentially shortsighted will have to be displaced. In our attempts to extract greater and greater yields from the land the soil has been depleted resulting in an ever greater need to apply excessive plant nutrients phosphates, nitrates and fertilizers which then enter the water table. This can cause water pollution. Also with detrimental effects such as algae blooms in in shore breeding grounds of mollusks. These can lead to the obstruction of sunlight to shellfish leading to mortality rates among various sea life.

Sustainable practices of allowing fields to lay fallow and naturally replenish the nitrogen was historically the method of restoration but there is an ever increasing desire to increase yields. Soil can not be depleted endlessly or the nutrient value in foods suffers also regardless of how pretty the fruit looks. Local farming that is community based on organic and sustainable practices or hydroponic farms and advances in technology seem promising. Genetic manipulation of foods though is still highly questionable and European nations are deeply concerned. We often pay more consideration to the gas we put into our cars then the food we put into our bodies in the US. I think that realistic visions of our natural resources can be best implemented by taking a lesson from the past.

There were seasons and times when certain vegetables, fruits and seafood were available. Our insistence upon endless choices has also contributed to endless waste and depletion. We chase ever dwindling stocks of Patagonian Tooth-fish (Chilean Sea Bass) into the Antarctic and it’s clear that this is a finite resource but likewise we need to consider the soil and the earth with as equal a consideration.

Dan_DeColumna's avatar

Harnessing all the wasted space the thousands of square miles of roof tops represent.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

That’s funny Dan. I was just going to say, the farm in my future is on my roof. Seems we have more in common than we thought.

talljasperman's avatar

farms in space…farms on the moon… lots of space and moon to grow crops…the space between the earth and the moon would have to be named and charted.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

there are farms in the future?
I guess they’d have everything genetically engineered

mattbrowne's avatar

I predict a shift from meat production to harvesting high-protein plants.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@mattbrowne god bless you – that’s great

SeventhSense's avatar

@mattbrowne
Or insects which much of the world eats but the western world frowns upon. The most plentiful source of protein is buzzing around our plants.

mattbrowne's avatar

Eating large servings of meat every day is like driving a large gas-guzzling SUV or taking short-haul planes in the larger metropolitan areas where (bullet) trains would use far less resources and energy.

In 2050 all of the 9 billion people will want a better life. It’s simply impossible to have an abundance of meat and fish for everybody. Farming and fishing will have to change. High-protein plants are the future. And perhaps insects. Perhaps artificial meat too.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

@mattbrowne Well they did “clone” bacon. Sort of. One wonders if it would have any nutritional value, though.

mattbrowne's avatar

@tragiclikebowie – Have you tried it?

tragiclikebowie's avatar

Noooooooooooooooo. Ick.

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