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The world's first floating farm: robot milking LED lights planting forage
Aug 23, 2018

According to the BBC, this year, the world's first floating farm opened in Merwehaven, Rotterdam, the Netherlands, to help the city continue to produce more of its own food. Dutch real estate company Beladon is building the world's first "floating farm" in Port Moselle, Rotterdam, and will use it to breed 40 Meuse-Rhine-Issel cows.


The world's first floating farm in Merwehaven, Rotterdam, with 40 robots for milking by robots

It is worth noting that there are robots to help with milking. Beladon's farm has three floors, anchored to the sea floor and is expected to open by the end of 2018, producing about 800 litres of milk a day.


The artist draws a picture of a floating farm that is used to raise cattle, raise fish and grow crops.

The building floats on the sea and is connected to the land by three corridors. In this way, the building can be in contact with the land. The two corridors lead to the upper and lower spaces respectively. The upper layer is used to raise cattle. It is the space where cattle live. It is decorated like a small park with green trees. The lower layer design is more diverse, including pasture areas, milk production areas, cattle waste collection, seawater desalination and energy production.

Beladon's engineer, Peter van Wingerden, first came up with the concept of a floating farm in 2012 when he was involved in a floating residential project on the Hudson river in New York. There, Hurricane Sandy attacked the city streets and destroyed the transportation network. The goods are difficult to deliver, and it is difficult to find fresh produce in the store within two days.

Van Wengden said: "I was shocked to see the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy. People need to produce food as close as possible to consumers. Therefore, the idea of producing fresh food on the water in a way that adapts to climate change has emerged." He added that this concept can also help defend against hurricanes. “With the growing demand for healthy food, rapid urbanization and climate change, we can no longer rely on past food production systems,” he said.

Later in 2012, Van Wengden's team began designing and communicating with the Port of Rotterdam Authority. Earlier this summer, its floating platform was transported by barge from Zaandam in the north of the Netherlands to Rotterdam.

Fan Wendeng's wife and business partner Minke van Wingerden said the farm will start with 40 cows, enough to make the company break even. But she said that floating farms are “easy to expand” and that larger businesses are expected to “significantly improve efficiency”. The farm also aims to reuse and recycle as much material as possible.

Albert Boersen, general manager of the floating farm, said: “At least 80% of our dairy cows eat waste from the Rotterdam food industry.” This may include grains discarded by local breweries, restaurants and coffee. Leftovers from the museum, by-products from local wheat processing plants, and even grass clippings, were collected and shipped by local “green waste” company GroenCollect's electric trucks.

Mink said: "We will also plant duckweed as an animal feed. It is rich in protein and grows rapidly. It can be fed with cow urine. We will install four or five vertical platforms under special LED lights for planting these plants. ”

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