In the current industrialized food production network, most food suppliers rely on large, mono-crop farms that grow massive amounts of a single product and ship it around the globe. Food may travel thousands of miles over the course of days, weeks, or even months before it reaches our tables. Not only is this system strain on the environment, and on the cost to the consumer, but it also affects the quality of the food we put in our bodies.
Inside of a Food Computer, climate variables such as carbon dioxide, air temperature, humidity, dissolved oxygen, potential hydrogen, electrical conductivity, root-zone temperature, and more can be controlled and monitored. Usage specifications such as operational energy, water use, and mineral consumption can also be monitored and adjusted through electrical meters, flow sensors, and controllable chemical dosers throughout the growth period.
The complete set of conditions throughout a growth cycle can be thought of as a climate recipe, and each recipe produces unique phenotypic expressions, or physical qualities in different plants. Plants grown under different conditions may vary in color, size, texture growth rate, yield, flavor, and nutrient density. Food computers could be used program biotic and abiotic stresses, such as an induced drought, to create desired plant-based expressions. It would even be possible to monitor existing natural climates and program them into downloadable recipe that could be shared around the globe.
With the creation of climate recipes, food computer users can import successful climates that have been created, tested, and perfected by other users. The recipes can be customized and optimized for different taste or yield preferences and for various food production needs. Imagine growing water-loving tropical fruits in the middle of the desert, or sun-loving summer berries in the midst of a snowy Boston winter. With climate recipes, you can grow local from anywhere!