Reducing Labour Costs
Inevitably, the cost of labour is a significant expenditure for both farms and greenhouses, particularly in locations with relatively high wages. However, there are ways to minimise the cost of labour.Community Involvement
Firstly, farms with a social mission can provide jobs and volunteer opportunities to members of the community who may otherwise be excluded from employment. Effectively accessing labour at a reduced cost, this benefits the farm while supporting the local community too.Increased Automation
From a commercial perspective, increased automation may be a more reliable way to reduce the need for manual labour and cut costs. While virtually all farm processes can be automated on a vertical farm, investment is required to implement new technology, Ramin Ebrahimnejad
says some vertical farming operations are already nearly 100% automated — but that is rare and very costly. He adds that greenhouses cannot be fully automated at this point because, unlike vertical farms, they don’t offer full control over all of the elements.Simplifying Farm Roles
The majority of indoor farms will likely remain manually operated for the next couple of decades, and he says that, currently, the major hurdle for farm managers is finding qualified employees with a variety of specialties — plant scientists, robotics scientists, AI specialists, and more.