Only last week we saw New York company BrightFarms offering a service to supermarkets that designs, finances, builds and operates hydroponic greenhouse farms either on the supermarket roof itself or atop distribution centers. Now, on a slightly smaller scale, Dakboerin in the Netherlands are working with residents, schools, offices and restaurants to build rooftop kitchen gardens in areas where growing space is scarce.
Founder Annelies Kuiper was always interested in sustainable living and organic food, but was inspired to start Dakboerin earlier this year after reading an article in Green Amsterdam about the number of food miles being travelled to meet the growing demand for organic produce. Dakboerin designs the vegetable gardens for roofs, generally in urban areas, and works with other experts during the construction — calculating building materials, applying for planning permits, and designing hives and chicken coups. Organic seeds are used to grow a variety of fruit and vegetables which are planted in lightweight natural substrate and can be maintained by Dakboerin if required. Dakboerin believes kitchen roofs will help businesses improve their green credentials, as well as providing employees with an attractive outdoor space and nutritious food. Dakboerin won second prize in the Biodiversity Innovation category at the New Venture Business Plan competition in London last month.
Hardly a week goes by without a new innovation in urban gardening and farming emerging, and with food prices increasing, along with demand for organic produce and concern for air miles, could your company save money and go greener with a kitchen roof garden?
Spotted by: Sheila Wigman