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Urban Farming: the Fish Plant Cycle

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
12 December 2008, at 12:00am

AUSTRALIA - A revolutionary urban farming system that utilises nutrient rich water from fish to grow vegetables is being developed in Nimbin and generating interest all over the world.

The ecoCity Farm has been in development for six years and has just been selected as part of the Australian Technology Showcase, reports The Northern Rivers Echo. The showcase is a joint initiative between the NSW, Victorian and Queensland governments to promote and develop export markets for innovative technology-based products.

According to the news agency, the initial design utilised trays of vegetables stacked on a ferris wheel style mechanism that rotates so each plant gets its necessary quota of sunlight. The growing area sat above a large fish tank and the water from the fish is used to feed the plants. The filtered water is then returned back to the fish tank. By vertically stacking them an enormous amount of vegetables can be produced in a limited space and the fish themselves can also be eaten.

Hogan and his co-designer Andrew Bodlovich hope that one day the units will sit on the roofs of apartment buildings and in suburban backyards in cities around the world. They claim each unit could feed around 300 families in the surrounding neighbourhood.

They have moved away from the ferris wheel system and are now developing other commercial systems that maximise space effeciency. The demand for the technology is being driven by a global food shortage and diminishing agricultural land and clean water. We need to develop food production systems that are not dependent on a land resource, inventor, Hogan Gleeson, told The Northern Rivers Echo.

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