Sydney’s first underground farm reducing distance between paddock and plate
Underneath Sydney’s bustling CBD, a group of savvy farmers have designed the city’s first underground commercial farm.
Four basement levels below the city streets in Barangaroo, in an office tower car park, Urban Green is now the largest vertical farm in Sydney.
It features 35 verities of microgreens – seedlings of plants that are usually harvested early before being fully grown.
From pink kale, spicy radish, coriander, basil and cabbage, the vertical garden is controlled almost entirely by artificial means including fans which imitates a light breeze to help the plans grow.
Just four years on from when it first began, Urban Green now provides fresh produce to restaurants and chefs around the city.
“I pretty much come down whenever I’ve got some lunches or dinner on, and I’ll handpick what I feel is adequate for each dish,” Aidan Glynn, Executive Chef at Foodrascal
There’s no need for a combine harvest or a crop duster, the vertical fields free of pests and the time between paddock and plate is also hugely reduced.
“By the time it comes down, hits the market, it touches three or four different hands, before I even get it in the restaurant,” Mr Glynn said.
“We have quite an advantage in that we’re not faced with those same problems.”
The veggies are being grown as part of a futuristic plan to re-imagine under-utilised space in the city.