ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom

Singapore has thought of an innovative way to increase food production as supply chains continue to be affected by the coronavirus – by transforming car park rooftops into farms.

Reuters reported the city-state is struggling to meet demand as it only produces a tenth of the food consumed.

Therefore, as many countries have gone into lockdown and are unable to ship food to Singapore, it is having to think of ways it can be more sustainable.

Authorities released a statement, saying: “The current Covid-19 situation underscores the importance of local food production, as part of Singapore’s strategies to ensure food security.”

It added: “Local food production mitigates our reliance on imports, and provides buffer in the event of food supply disruptions.”

Only one per cent of its 724 sq km of land is used for agriculture, due to the shortage of space available.

Therefore, the Food Agency is planning to launch a tender next month for rooftops on car parks. It is having to resort to urban farms because of Singapore’s lack of greenery.

If granted, it will receive a S$30 million (£16.69 million) to help it produce a range of food products, including leafy vegetables, eggs and fish.

Tesco is also looking to make food production more sustainable by joining up with WWF to assess how environmentally friendly some of the UK’s most popular produce is in terms of its packaging waste, deforestation implications and climate change bearing.

Its Sustainable Basket Metric aims to halve Tesco’s environmental impact of food by 2030.

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With the impending release of the UK government’s clean heat strategy, and the commitment to reaching net-zero by 2050, ecologically friendly agriculture company Low Carbon Farming has announced it has found potential sites for 41 giant, low carbon greenhouses.

According to Environment Journal, the plan for the greenhouses could make the UK self-sufficient in tomatoes and cucumbers, as well as peppers and flowers, which will remove the food miles associated with the importing of fresh vegetables, as well as creating 8,000 jobs, injecting £2.67bn into local economies, and increase the UK’s clean heat output by nearly 3 TWh per annum.

The scheme will do away with the more traditional gas-fired heating methods for industrial greenhouses, and replace that with heat pumps to capture waste heat from nearby recycling centres.

Andy Allen, a director at Low Carbon Farming, said: “Our East Anglian projects provide British farming with a bankable template for the nationwide roll-out of transformative, renewable heat solutions.

“Having secured the financing and proven the business model, and with the case for secure and sustainable British produce having been thrown into such sharp focus, it’s time to plan for the next stage.”

Low Carbon Farming has teamed up with Anglian Water on the primary projects, who will supply the waste heat, simultaneously solving the environmental issues surrounding heating local water courses.

David Riley, head of carbon neutrality at Anglian Water: ‘These projects are helping us fulfil our environmental obligations and represent the kind of innovative approach to sustainability we are embracing right across our business in our own challenge to become zero carbon by 2030.

‘Finding alternative sustainable uses for land close to water recycling centres which also make use of excess energy makes sense for UK businesses.’

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