CIGR working group established in 2016
Plant Factory and Intelligent Greenhouse (PFIG)



 The world population reached 7.3 billion as of mid-2015 and will continue to increase by 2100. To feed the growing world population, a dramatic improvement of land productivity and securing of stable food supply are strongly required. At the same time, demand for high value-added foods, not only high quality foods but functional foods that contribute to the health promotion, is also increased. To answer to these demands, the importance of "plant factory and intelligent greenhouse" as productive food production system has been increasing.

 The plant factory is a facility achieving an extremely steady plant production under fully controlled environmental condition without sunlight. In a well-insulated and airtight facility, multiple culture shelves are vertically stacked and each shelve is equipped with electric lamps for photosynthesis of leafy vegetables. Moreover, agricultural production by controlling specific microorganism such as bacteria-free culture might be possible. And, the intelligent greenhouse is an advanced greenhouse equipped with an automated environmental control system and conducting year-round plant production of various plants including vegetables and ornamental foliage plants under the sun. Currently, the computerized plant production based on the concept of Speaking Plant Approach (SPA) attracts attentions as an implementable key technology to achieve a significant productivity improvement in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse. The concept of SPA defines that the optimization of cultivation conditions should be based on measurements of the plant biological and physiological information and it is getting feasible according to a recent development of information technology, i.e. artificial intelligence and bioinformatics symbolized by omics.

 The research for the agricultural production in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse consist of wide-ranging studies on facility, energy, horticulture, plant physiology and ecology, mechanization and automation, computing and modeling, and measurement. Furthermore, the cutting-edge information technologies deserve to be involved in this research area. However, there is no integrated research community focusing on plant factory and intelligent greenhouse until now. By organic integration of relevant study fields, the productivity of plant factory and intelligent greenhouse must be taken one bold step further. Therefore, scientific and technological approaches of this area will be more and more important for CIGR activities. However, there is no existing technical section (TS) and working group (WG) covering the plant factory and intelligent greenhouse.