Food and Energy Security

Cover image for Vol. 5 Issue 2

Early View (Online Version of Record published before inclusion in an issue)

Edited By: Professor Martin Parry, Rothamsted Research

Online ISSN: 2048-3694


  1. 1
  1. Original Research

    1. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Vertical farming increases lettuce yield per unit area compared to conventional horizontal hydroponics

      Dionysios Touliatos, Ian C. Dodd and Martin McAinsh

      Version of Record online: 6 JUN 2016 | DOI: 10.1002/fes3.83

      Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

      Vertical farming systems (VFS) have been proposed as an engineering solution to increase productivity per unit area of cultivated land by extending crop production into the vertical dimension. To test whether this approach presents a viable alternative to horizontal crop production systems, a VFS was compared against a conventional horizontal hydroponic system (HHS). Although photosynthetic photon flux density and shoot fresh weight decreased significantly in the VFS from top to base, the VFS produced more crop per unit of growing floor area when compared with the HHS. Our results clearly demonstrate that VFS presents an attractive alternative to horizontal hydroponic growth systems and suggest that further increases in yield could be achieved by incorporating artificial lighting in the VFS.


  1. 1