Archive for the ‘from Idea to Reality’ Category

My dream AquaFarm location in Zurich

Das Gute ist oft so nah!

Dream Location


AquaFarm Squatting (Hausbesetzung)

Unsere Vorgabe, eine taugliche und brachliegende Dachliegenschaft im urbanen Raum zu finden, die gleichzeitig alle baulichen Voraussetzungen mitbringt, die wir als urban farmers benötigen, ist nicht einfach! Wie einfach(er) wäre es da, eine zum Abbruch bestimmte Gebäudehülle (siehe Bild…) als temporäre Produktionsstädte und urban farm zu besetzen und damit der Stadt wiederum ein Stück der Natur zuzuführen? Im Sinne von “we green the rooftops of cities” besetzt AquaFarm brachliegende und zum Abbruch bestimmte Stadtgebäude, um sie vor ihrer Auffahrt in den “Gebäudehimmel” nochmals produktiv zum Wohle der Menschheit mit frischem Fisch und Gemüse zu versorgen.  I like!

Produktive Hausbesetzung bevor es in den Gebäudehimmel geht.

Camper sales

Bei einem der spätherbstlichen Spatziergänge mit meinem Sohn Felix habe ich diesen wunderschönen Camper auf dem Vorplatz eines Gemeinschaftgszentrums gefunden.


Wäre es nicht toll, mit einem solchen Camper AquaFarm Produkte an den Endkonsumenten zu verkaufen? Easy, cool, suber-mobil könnte er in jedem Quartier aufgestellt werden und so die Kundschaft vor Ort & direkt lokal mit frischem Gemüse und Fisch bedient werden. Mega!

Balancing the heart and the mind

We were getting a lot of comments  – mostly dislikes – for posting this video on a commercial-scale hydrponic system recently. It is clear that we don’t like to remind ourselves of the industrialized aspects how we cultivate food in the modern era. The point I was trying to make though was that the world of hydrponics / aquaponics should be seen as a competitive method in producing food against the traditionals land-based methods – and that it is not just a playground for freaks and geeks experimenting with technology in their backyards and for their private amusement.

I am posting another video here that shows a less industrial approach of an existing Aquaponics system. The tranquil atmosphere and the peaceful setting of this space is awesome and reminds me of an indoor yoga garden. It shows that we can combine a productive system with the emotional needs of growing food with dignity and a human touch, without massive automation and industrialized strategies for staying cost-competitive, striking a better balance for the heart and the mind.

urban farming in the news

Yet another interesting article on urban farming initiatives worldwide.  Most of the players have been mentioned in this blog already. – It just shows again that the potential of urban farming is getting mainstream, and that the facts apparently keep convincing more and more people about the benefits. Stay tuned for more news!

1,100 hits on aquafarm – from idea to reality

Dear readers, we have hit 1,100 hits on today and the site is currently visited by about 10-15 people (unique visitors) a day  – this excluding the writers, of course. That is a strong signal, given that we have hardly communicated the site to anybody yet, but the word must have spread somehow virally to different people that what we are doing is kind of cool…. The metrics on the poll as well as the number of subsribers to the blog seem promising, too. Thanks everybody for listening and supporting our venture!

Productivity issues – I don’t think so!

In the about section of this blog, we frequently talk about the fact that AquaFarm aims to drive sustainability goals while also staying competitive in terms of cost and productivity. This is a claim we were making without operating our first commercial-scale AquaFarm, but the advantages of aquaponic systems were clear to us, even at pilot-stage.

Check out the following link on a commercial Hydroponic system. The video showcases a highly automated and industrialized plant. Talk about productivity…the yield is apparently 5x higher than on soil-based production methods. We think this is really ground-breaking progress! Granted, the industrialized methods of growing lettuce through conveyer belts, WIP staging, and other modern (Lean) manufacturing methods takes some mental adjusting. But then again – only if we can combine the sustainability aspects of growing healthy and save food with the ability to competite effectively in the market (without subsidies!), have we established a superior agricultural production model for the 21st century. This is what we trying to do with AquaFarm.

Please remember one thing which sets AquaFarm apart from this hydroponic video: No fertilizer! With the combination of the fish farm and the vegetable garden, we do not need any oil-based added nutrients. All nutrients are used organically within a closed-loop system, no strings attached. OK?!