These shipping container growing units from Freight Farms feature high-density vegetable & herb production, and include everything needed to go from seed to table, year-round, in a fraction of the space as a conventional greenhouse.

Ideas for methods of growing more produce in and around urban areas, close to where the food will be consumed, come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, but one shape in particular keeps popping up in urban agriculture, especially when it comes to year-round growing and cold climates. Shipping containers (also known as intermodal freight containers), while probably not the first thing to come to mind when it comes to growing vegetables, are a great choice for upcycling and repurposing for urban farms, because they’re affordable, readily available, and built to last for decades, and with some extensive retrofitting, can be used as climate-controlled indoor farms.

I recently covered the CropBox, which boasts of being a “farm in a box,” but long before that shipping container farm made the news, Freight Farms was building their own high-density growing units inside cargo containers, thanks to a successful crowdfunding campaign run in 2011. Since then, Freight Farms has continued to develop and improve its urban farm units, dubbed the Leafy Green Machine (LGM), which uses high-efficiency LED lighting, vertical hydroponic growing towers, and an automated climate-control and irrigation system to grow thousands of plants inside a single 320 square foot container.


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