Presentation Title

Vertical Farming for the Aviation Industry in Florida (Invited Speaker)

Start Date

12-4-2022 9:30 AM

End Date

12-4-2022 10:00 AM

Presentation Type

Invited Speaker

Presentation Description/Abstract

A worrying emerging global problem is the decreased stock of agricultural land per capita despite population growth. It is projected that by 2050, the arable land per person will decrease to 1/3rd of that available in 1970. In Florida, it is estimated that 50 000 acres of land was lost in 2015 alone. One reason for this loss is climate change. To prevent irrecoverable climate change damage and to combat existing unsustainable agricultural techniques, the food supply chain must shift away from a global supply (during which food is produced in remote areas and then transported via trucks, ships, and air to cities) to local agriculture initiatives (which grows food in city centers). Vertical farming is a form of urban agriculture to grow a variety of fruits and vegetables in controlled indoor environments nearby the consumer to eliminate emissions associated with transporting produce from remote areas. Since it is more sustainable, some players in the aviation industry recently identified the benefits of growing in-flight catering in vertical farms adjacent to airports. For example, Singapore Airlines partnered with AeroFarms to supply leafy greens for business class meals on flights departing Newark. More widespread knowledge of vertical farming will allow more airlines and airports to embrace similar initiatives.

Presenter Biography

Dassie is a Swiss Canadian ‘Jill of all trades’ who grew up in South Africa but currently resides in Canada. Her first career as a field hockey player ended abruptly after an injury so, she replaced her goal of participating in the Olympics with aspirations of a career in the sky. After graduating from the University of Pretoria with a BSc Architecture degree, Dassie moved to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to travel the world as a flight attendant for Etihad Airways while completing her fixed-wing pilot training in South Africa. She then moved to Belgium to convert her pilot license to the European equivalent. Dassie secured a job as an Airbus A320 co-pilot with EasyJet and as a monthly aviation columnist for the SA Flyer magazine. Unfortunately, she completed her A320 skilled test in the simulator as COVID brought the aviation industry to a halt so, her offer of employment was withdrawn. This industry standstill inspired Dassie to pursue her interest in making air and space travel more environmentally friendly and socially responsible. So, she became a carbon footprint analyst and is on track to graduate with an MSc Aviation and Aerospace Sustainability degree with a specialization in Space Systems from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in May 2022. Dassie believes that her unique multi-disciplinary approach to solving problems will allow her to make meaningful contribution to the aerospace industry as her career unfolds.

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Apr 12th, 9:30 AM Apr 12th, 10:00 AM

Vertical Farming for the Aviation Industry in Florida (Invited Speaker)

A worrying emerging global problem is the decreased stock of agricultural land per capita despite population growth. It is projected that by 2050, the arable land per person will decrease to 1/3rd of that available in 1970. In Florida, it is estimated that 50 000 acres of land was lost in 2015 alone. One reason for this loss is climate change. To prevent irrecoverable climate change damage and to combat existing unsustainable agricultural techniques, the food supply chain must shift away from a global supply (during which food is produced in remote areas and then transported via trucks, ships, and air to cities) to local agriculture initiatives (which grows food in city centers). Vertical farming is a form of urban agriculture to grow a variety of fruits and vegetables in controlled indoor environments nearby the consumer to eliminate emissions associated with transporting produce from remote areas. Since it is more sustainable, some players in the aviation industry recently identified the benefits of growing in-flight catering in vertical farms adjacent to airports. For example, Singapore Airlines partnered with AeroFarms to supply leafy greens for business class meals on flights departing Newark. More widespread knowledge of vertical farming will allow more airlines and airports to embrace similar initiatives.