Can Africa’s urban farms go vertical?

The New York region is set to welcome one of the most impressive indoor urban farming units in history.  Known as Aerofarms, it is the latest in a movement known as vertical farming that utilizes abandoned buildings, warehouses and skyscrapers to grow food.

Sophisticated technology based on LED lights, water, nutrients and air dispenses with the need for soil and sun, to grow vegetables for expanding urban populations.

But while the movement is taking hold in cities from Chicago to Manhattan to Singapore to Miyagi Prefecture in Japan it has barely debuted in the megacities of Africa, where the need for safe, nutritious food is urgent.

Africa’s urban growth rate is the highest in the world.  At 3.5 percent per year, it is double the world average.

Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya, is home to almost 3 million people and its population is expected to rise by 77 percent by 2025. The urban population of Dar es Salaam, the capital of Tanzania, is expected to rise 85 percent in the next 15 years.