Ed Harwood - AeroFarms

Why Sunlight Isn't Free and Other Lessons From AeroFarms

  • Traditional field agriculture has a lot of externalities that aren't accounted for such as crop damage, losses in transport, and environmental challenges.

  • LED Lighting uses in horticulture.

  • Lessons learned from bringing new technologies to market.

Interview Summary, Recommendations, and Insights:

  • Learn about Ed’s journey to co-founding Aerofarms through his work at Cornell [0:00]

  • Ed shares some of his experiences bringing new technologies to market. [4:00]

  • Why Sunlight Isn’t Free -- cost externalities in field agriculture. [6:30]

  • How Aerofarms is focusing on sustainability and process improvement [16:00]

  • Opportunities and collaboration possibilities with Aerofarms [18:20]

  • ASBE Study to develop ANSII standards for LED Lighting used in horticulture. [20:00]

  • Lessons learned from bringing new technologies to market.

  • ASABE - http://www.asabe.org/ (produce ANSI Standards) - project to create standards for horticultural technology.

Where to follow Aerofarms

www.AeroFarms.com and www.DreamGreens.com 



Dream Greens



Dream Greens


Dream Greens

Aerofarms in the media:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ME_rprRlmMM

Suggested References:

Greenhouse Engineering

Seeds, Second Edition: Ecology, Biogeography, and, Evolution of Dormancy and Germination

Fundamentals of Plant Science

A Produce Reference Guide to Fruits and Vegetables from Around the WorldHydroponics: A Practical Guide for the Soilless Grower.

Postharvest Technology of Horticultural CropsLED Lighting for Urban Agriculture

Photobiology of higher plants

Physicochemical and Environmental Plant Physiology.Soilless Culture – Theory and practice Hydroponic Food Production Photomorphogenesis in Plants and Bacteria

For fun:

What a Plant Knows

ProceedingsACTA Horticulturae Proceedings Proceedings from the Greenhouse Systems International Conference

Call to action from our interview:

Challenge your assumptions! Write down a list of your own critical lines of thinking, and assumptions, and try to think of them in a new way.

About Ed Harwood

With over 40 years of agricultural and engineering experience, Ed founded GreatVeggies® LLC in 2004 before commercializing further in 2009 with a cleantech investment from 21 Ventures and The Quercus Trust. Ed and the then new OEM company, Aero Farm Systems, were the winner of the following awards:

• 2011 World Technology Awards Finalist for the Environment

• 2011 Clean Equity Monaco Runner Up for Technology Research

• 2011 Red Herring Global Top 100 Finalist

• 2010 Red Herring Global Top 100 North America Winner

In 2011 a merger with Just Greens, LLC created a company dedicated to owning and operating large commercial aeroponic farms worldwide to grow leafy greens. It is located in Newark, NJ and is building a very large vertical farm capable of growing over 1.5 million lbs of leafy greens each year.

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