Countryside – The Future: Horticulture takes center stage in New York City

The horticultural sector, prominently featured in the center of the world: New York City. A unique story when it comes to food production, based on knowledge and technology and focused on sustainability, circularity, health and using the power of nature. These subjects are important to me in my personal life and being an entrepreneur.

On 20 February 2020 the exposition ‘Countryside – The Future’ opened in the Guggenheim Museum in New York. The renowned Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas initiated this project and presents horticulture as one of the possible solutions to current global challenges. To me this exhibition is a great opportunity to present the strengths of the horticultural sector to the world and we want to use it as a platform to launch other activities and create impact. That is exactly why the foundation NethWork was established. I hereby would like to invite you to cooperate with us because exciting times are ahead of us!

Ed Smit, founder and key connector NethWork 

Countryside – The Future

From 20 February 2020 onwards, the Guggenheim Museum in New York will feature the exposition Countryside – The future, initiated by Rem Koolhaas.

By organizing this exposition, Mr. Koolhaas’s think tank AMO and the Guggenheim want to boost the discussion about the developments in non-urban areas. The exposition illustrates the important position of the countryside when it comes to the major transformations in the world. These transformations usually become visible in cities, but the origin of these developments mostly start in the countryside.

The goal of Countryside – The Future is to create impact. The exposition itself is now extended to January 2021 but the effects of what will be exposed in New York will definitely last much longer.

Countryside – The Future tells the story of the development of the countryside throughout the ages, using various themes. These themes will be visualized by connecting them to specific areas in the world. The horticultural sector illustrates what the future of food and food production look like.

Spotlight on horticulture! 

Rem Koolhaas and Samir Bantal of AMO aim to inspire visitors to this exposition to think about the importance of the countryside and show them possible solutions that are decisive for the future of our planet.

The horticultural sector shows how it provides solutions for global, societal challenges by always using nature as the starting point. The exposition in the Guggenheim Museum offers an unprecedented opportunity to tell the world that the production of healthy, affordable and sustainable food is already feasible. 

Some years ago, Rem Koolhaas got to know Dutch horticulture and what he saw and experienced made a lasting impression: a sector based on high quality knowledge and technology that contributes to the wellbeing of people all over the world by offering solutions in fields like water, energy, food security and food safety as well as sustainability. He then invited the sector to contribute to his exposition in the Guggenheim Museum in New York and turn his vision on what the countryside can do into a reality. 

Various horticultural companies contribute substantially to Countryside – The Future. Right on 5th Avenue, in front of the Guggenheim Museum, a transparent vertical farming production-unit has been placed on the pavement in which healthy cherry tomatoes will be produced in a sustainable and efficient way. This unit was constructed by Infinite Acres, a joint venture between Priva and 80 Acres, in close collaboration with Rijk ZwaanHortilux-Schrèder and Grodan.

Inside the museum, several objects symbolize the connection between nature on one side and the production of sustainable, affordable and healthy food on the other. Visitors will encounter a greenhouse built by BOM Group for the production of micro greens of Koppert Cress. The greenhouse is equipped with LED lighting of Hortilux-Schrèder, a mini-Airobug and beehive of Koppert Biological Systems and micro-drones of PATS. A robot from the Priva Kompano Deleaf Line visualizes that the role of human labor will change by using robotization, A.I., Big Data and deep learning.