Aquaponics is Swimming into Mainstream Agriculture
Today, aquaponics is turning up everywhere and the acceptance and knowledge of this means of farming is growing exponentially.
Years ago, aquaponics was on the fringe, a new growing method that was nearly unheard of in the world of agriculture. In the early days of the aquaponics industry, if you mentioned aquaponics to a traditional farmer, educator or gardener, the blank stare you received eventually typically led to a conversation about raising fish and plants in an integrated system. What started as a brief exchange often turned into a lengthy discussion about the many benefits of this method of growing. Phrases describing aquaponics, such as water-saving, sustainable, no pesticides or herbicides and growing year ‘round, were new and exciting to those who had only grown in the soil using traditional methods.
Now, though, it is a very different story. Aquaponics is no longer on the fringe. It has infiltrated main stream agriculture.
One example is the Wisconsin State Fair. We were honored and excited to be invited to install a fully-functional aquaponic systems in the Discovery Barnyard (sponsored by Compeer Financial) for the 2019 fair. Looking at it from the fish’s point of view, they swam in tanks surrounded by cows, goats, pigs, chickens, ducks and hundreds of thousands of people. Aquaponics was new at the fair this year and the response was fantastic! The Nelson and Pade system on display helped people learn about aquaponics. Wisconsin State FFA officers were on site to explain the concepts and equipment to the fairgoers.
Another great example of mainstream agriculture embracing aquaponics in a recent article in the John Deere Homestead magazine. John Deere manufactures tractors and traditional farming equipment. Their feature of aquaponics in their magazine showcases an interest in diversified and innovative agriculture.
Additionally, the Farm Bureau, the national organization known as the voice for farmers, now includes aquaponic farmers as well! In a recent announcement for the Farm Bureau Ag Innovation Challenge, they specifically mention aquaponics. As a budding aquaponic farmer, you can be considered for the challenge, which awards cash prizes to the chosen winners.
These are just a few examples. We see mentions of aquaponics like this every day. With this much recognition and growing awareness of aquaponics, I believe the growth of our industry is limitless.
Join us in spreading the word! www.aquaponics.com