Why we use Aquaponics,
(And not traditional hydroponics)
Aquaponics and Hydroponics share some benefits.
Both Aquaponics and Hydroponics use significantly less water than traditional agriculture- up to 10x less, with aquaponics using even less than that.
Both methods allow for faster and more efficient food production- up to 4x as much from the same space!
Both methods can be contained in a greenhouse, allowing for year-round production in local communities.
Unfortunately, Hydroponics is rarely organic.
Hydroponics often utilizes wasteful, non-recycable grow media like rockwool or foam. These are mined from the earth, and use tons of energy to make.
Even organic hydroponics requires regular changes of the water because the nutrient salts build up in the water over time. That water, which is no longer suitable for growing plants, is drained away either into the ground or local water supply.
Aquaponics reuses the water continually.
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How does Aquaponics work?
Aquaponics utilizes the symbiotic relationship between fish and plants to deliver nutrients to plants grown in water. In turn, the plants help filter the water to keep the fish happy and their tanks clean.
To get a little more technical- Fish produce waste in the form of ammonia which can be harmful to the fish. This ammonia is converted by two different bacteria into useable Nitrate, which isn’t as toxic and can be filtered out by the growing plants. It’s a win-win!
Aquaponics Mirrors Nature
Aquaponics was utilized by many cultures dating back to the 13th century including the Aztecs and the Chinese. The process remains essentially unchanged, though with different methods.
Mirroring the cycle created in nature, the Aztecs were able to utilize nutrient rich water to produce greater amounts of food.
Other farms could be using chemical pesticides, herbicides, or nutrients without disclosing them. We could never because our fish are sensitive and would die if any got in the water. Which can you trust more?
- Never get our nutrients from a bottle (our fish take care of that!)
- Never use chemical pesiticides or herbicides (even many certified organic chemicals can harm the fish, so we won’t use them!)
- Continue to be a leader in sustainable agriculture, zero waste, and closed-loop farming.