Good Greens Aquaponics at 2424 Commerce St. on the far North Side of La Crosse has started offering tours by appointment and plans to open its own retail store within a few weeks.
Good Greens is a new division of ORC Industries, which employs people with disabilities. Its 14,000-square-foot aquaponics system is growing tilapia fish as well as lettuce and herbs such as basil, oregano and mint.
The retail store in part of the aquaponics building will sell whole tilapia fish on ice, as well as romaine lettuce and herbs such as basil, oregano and mint, said Erik Carlson, facilities manager.
Aquaponics is the combination of aquaculture, or the raising of fish, with hydroponics, or the raising of produce in a water-based system. The system has 12 tanks that each hold up to 600 tilapia. Their waste is processed and turned into nitrates and other plant foods that then circulate to the hydroponics system……………………
Lihue. Ueli Muller, manager of Kaua`i Community College’s Aquaponics program, proudly announced that since 2013, the College has sold over $25,000 of produce and honey cultivated in its Aquaponics and Apiary facilities at the Kaua`i Community Market. The Market, held every Saturday in the campus front parking lot from 9:30 am – 1:00 pm, was voted Best Farmer’s Market every year since 2012. Frequented by visitors from other islands, states and countries, with residents of all ages and from all parts of the island, it has become a gathering place where healthy, freshly produced food is abundant and ready to take home and enjoy.
Muller reported that over the years Kaua`i CC’s Aquaponics facility has successfully grown and sold ten different kinds of lettuces, including butter head, types of romaine, summer crisp varieties, and oak leaf; mizuna; mint; watercress; arugula; cilantro; napa cabbage; red cabbage; varieties of beets; fennel; varieties of basil; and tatsoi. The honey, coming straight from the College’s beehives, varies richly in hues and flavors. “Thanks to all my team members and volunteers who have assisted me over the years and put in so much work and dedication to the cause,” said Muller. Every week he, with staff, can be seen at the Market busily making sales and teaching customers about where and how the items are grown. The income from sales is used to purchase supplies for the Aquaponics and Apiary programs.
“I commend Muller, his staff, and members of the Apiary Program for their diligent efforts, which have brought us to this impressive level,” said Helen Cox, Kaua`i CC Chancellor. “We are proud of our programs and weekly presence at the Kaua`i Community Market,” she said.
Aquaponics is a sustainable food production system that combines traditional aquaculture (raising aquatic animals such as fish, crayfish or prawns in tanks) with hydroponics (cultivating plants in water) in a symbiotic environment. Systems vary in size from small indoor or outdoor to large commercial units.
In Apiary at Kaua`i CC, honey producing bees thrive and queen-rearing research and cultivation are taking place under the leadership of Georgeanne Purvinis, faculty; Francis Takahashi, Jr., retired faculty; and James Trujillo and Robert Alan Spencer, staff. With the growing global concern over the decline of bee populations, the proactive work being done at Kaua`i CC is imperative.
Aquaponics and Apiary classes will continue to be held via Kaua`i CC’s Office of Continuing Education and Training (OCET). “Backyard farming has indeed a place in agriculture sustainability,” said OCET director Calvin Shirai.
“Kaua`i CC is a place where we are promoting a lifestyle that is sustainable—where growing our own food is a way of life,” said Chancellor Cox. “We support agriculture as a viable industry for Kaua`i and members of the community who love to garden and want to grow their own food,” she said.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — What do you get when you combine fish and a green thumb? Well it’s called aquaponics and one Colorado Springs company is using this unique method to grow lettuce.
It all started with hopes of feeding the world.
Josh Imhoff, CEO of Emerge Aquaponics said, “We were trying to figure out a great way to feed orphanages and widows homes around the world and then we realized we needed to do it here locally for our own community.”
In a greenhouse in eastern Colorado Springs and another one in Black Forest, Emerge Aquaponics is doing just that with tilapia, water, and some beautiful Butterhead Bibb lettuce.
“The rafts are floating on water and the roots just grow right into the water,” said Imhoff…………………………………
Back to School: Local schools share updates and information as first day approaches for Dana Point students
During the 2015-2016 school year, the school watched science “come to life,” and plan on utilizing the program again with the aquaponics program.
Aquaponics is a system of aquaculture in which the waste produced by fish, or other aquatic animals, supplies nutrients for plants that are grown hydroponically.