This week we continued our installs across various CREC schools which just so happens to coincide with National Farm To School month. We also checked in with some of our original CREC teachers to see what they are growing. We’ll take a look at various news around the industry, blog updates this week and check out what we’re doing to encourage more farm to school programs in our state.
In this week’s harvest:
1. Client Spotlight: CREC Schools
This week we continued work on the various installs at CREC schools across the state. Right now we are in the process of finishing up 5 aGarden system installs in four of their schools. Last week we got all the materials delivered and began putting up the framework for each system. This week we worked on installing the various aquaponic hardware for each system. The fish tanks, media beds, sum tanks, vertical grow towers, lights etc. We’ll finish off the week by getting started on plumbing all these components together, the last step before we get to hand these over to the students! Check out the pics of the progress below!
2. Company Updates
This week we continued with another round of plants into the system. We are now over 5,000 plants in our system and will have it fully filled out next week. We will also be making our fist harvests either this weekend or early next week. The farm is finally starting to look as we envisioned it so many months ago and we cannot wait to start sharing our harvests with our FreshCSA members starting early November. We only have 33 spots left. If you have not already joined you can do so right here. We will have pick-up locations at our farm in Meriden and also across from the High School on Hubbard St. in Glastonbury.
3. Blog Updates
It’s National Farm To School Month – Celebrate With Us – October is national farm to school month. We’re celebrating with 9 new aquaponics systems going into schools this month as well as upgrading a few we already have out in the wild. In this post we cover why farm to school programming is so impactful in helping teachers get student engagement. We’ll also look at how CT schools stack up against the national average and showcase opportunities for teachers, administrators and parents to bring these programs to their schools. Check out the blog to learn more!
Microbes – The Teamwork That Makes The Dream Work – In aquaponics, the microbes provide the behind the scenes work needed to make the fish and plants work so harmoniously together. But, in order for the microbes to do all that behind the scenes work, they need their own needs met. This blog post covers how to plan for your microbes and how to utilize them to grow to your fullest potential. Check out all the info on the blog here.
4. Industry News
Johannesburg has a new rooftop farm, with 100 more planned – Johannesburg is jumping onto the urban agriculture map with its newest rooftop farm. This is going to be a pilot farm that will prove out the rooftop farming model in Johannesburg. If the pilot is successful, their is commitment to finance another 100 rooftop farms across the city. Get the behind the scenes scoop on Johannesburg’s big push into urban agriculture on the blog here.
New 12 Acre Aquaponics Farm Planned For Minnesota – Minnesota is about to become the home of a huge new aquaponics farm. Glen Ford of InCity farms, just purchased twelve acres of land of the city of Wellston and plans to build a $20million 175,000sqft facility. This wold make it one of the largest commercial aquaponics operations in the country. Mr. Ford looks to use the project as a way to solve limited access to fresh foods in the city, as an economic driver by hiring locally and to prove out the large scale model in hopes of scaling in a few years. You can learn more about this awesome project here.
5. Featured Products
FreshCSA – We are down to 33 open spots for this round of FreshCSA shares. FreshCSA is your ten week salad subscription program. Each week for ten weeks you will get all your fixings to make 5 side salads for two people or 5 dinner size salads for one person. It will be only way to get our produce through the end of the year. Shares will be available for pickup at our farm in Meriden and in Glastonbury across the street from the high school on Hubbard St. With the growing season coming to a close for most farmers it will be hard to find fresh, local produce. Secure your share and keep eating fresh into the new year! Grab your FreshCSA here.
FREE Educators Workshop – ATTENTION teachers, school administrators and parents of students. Looking for a way to bring aquaponics or farm to school programming to your school? We are hosting a series of free educators workshops this November open to anyone looking to growing food into their classroom. If you’ve been looking fo that change that can make your kids excited to learn and bring life to your classroom, a classroom garden is one of the best and most engaging ways to do it. Join one of our free workshops and we’ll show you all you need, including where you can find the money, to get your school growing strong! Learn more here.