S1E12: 012 David Farquhar - Leveraging Science and Scale


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Join Harry Duran, host of Vertical Farming Podcast, as he welcomes back to the show CEO of Intelligent Growth Solutions, David Farquhar. In this episode, Harry and David talk all about the resounding economic and societal impact that Covid-19 has had on the AgTech industry and our daily lives. David shares the amount of science and scale that goes into every aspect of what IGS does as well as some of the latest projects they’re working on, including developing technologies to replicate the weather.

Special thanks to our Season 1 Sponsor

IGS – https://intelligentgrowthsolutions.com/

Vertical Farming Congress

Key Takeaways

02:50 – Harry welcomes David Farquhar back to the show to discuss how Covid-19 has altered the AgTech industry and his business strategy specifically

10:26 – David speaks to the initiatives and innovations that his organization, Intelligent Growth Solutions, has been working on lately

15:42 – David breaks down the amount of science, development, processing power and scale that goes into AgTech

20:42 – What Intelligent Growth Solutions is doing to give back to the community amidst Covid-19

24:54 – David talks about promoting awareness among the next generation about the opportunities that vertical farming provides

32:53 – New models in AgTech that are likely to manifest over the next few years

38:46 – David speculates on the future of technology development at IGS and shares the work IGS is doing with weather and climate technologies

47:56 – A tough question David has had to ask himself lately


“I am not a fan of the phrase, ‘a new normal.’ I do think that we need to be flexible though. And I think that we’ve probably learned to do several things in a different way, and that’s good. But I am keen to see people actually socially get back together as soon as it’s safe.” (08:16)

“I think if people put their hand on their hearts and were honest with you in this sector, they would probably admit that once you’ve cracked the lighting, the power, the automation and handling, and the irrigation, the thing that is left on the table that is the toughest nut to crack is around the area of ventilation.” (11:14)

“And I have to say we also borrowed a couple of people’s garages. A couple of guys did some amazing work from home. I’d love to think of this as the AgriTech Garage Band.” (13:47)

“You know from our last conversation that we’ve made this promise to the market that we will never grow crops for commercial sale. Our covenant is that we’re a tech vendor, you guys are the farmers, you’re the growers, you know how to do this stuff. We’ll just give you a better set of tools.” (19:52)

“I think that governments have to make a choice between a societal focus or an economic focus and one or the other is going to suffer…I just hope that humanity comes to the fore because, at the end of the day, it’s people that make things happen. We need to look after people.” (24:17)

“Everybody loves everything as a service, whether it’s software, or razor blades or ink cartridges. How about farming as a service?” (34:57

“If there’s something that just works, then why not use it?” (40:06)

“The ability to manage that – the ability to replicate a certain type of weather because that’s the weather that this crop needs – that is the thing that we’ve been working incredibly hard on.” (43:23)

Links Mentioned:

David’s Website

David’s LinkedIn

Intelligent Growth Solutions

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