- Production Manager
- Assistant Professor - Controlled Environments Entomologist
- Technical Development Specialist | Horticulture | France
- Director of Business Development | Middle East | Agtech
- Farm/Production Manager; Berlin (m/w/d)
- Trader Asian Market
- Avocado Growing Manager - Kenya
- Operations Accountant
- Sales Manager for Nordic countries (H/F)
- Senior Breeder
Top 5 -yesterday
- What is the status of tomato brown rugose fruit virus in Europe?
- “Our ToBRFV-resistant variety has been preferred by our producers in wide areas since 2020"
- 2022 Year Overview: 10 stories on greenhouse expansion
- "Greek producers, who also purchase their plants from Spanish nurseries, have reported the same quality issue in strawberry plants as Spanish producers"
- New horticultural lighting technical requirements launched
Top 5 -last week
Top 5 -last month
- Zambia: "We produce 5,000 units of lettuce per week, per tunnel, year-round"
- UK growers stop planting and put nurseries on sale amidst energy crisis and labor shortage
- "You can't grow on water without lights"
- "High-tech farmer AppHarvest is running out of money"
- German family company switches from tomato cultivation to hydroponic lettuce
US (ME): Aquaponic grower secures $1.6M to expand greenhouse
Springworks’ expansion will earn it the distinction as the largest aquaponic farm in New England. That growth has been driven by the facility’s success in implementing innovative principles to realize an enormous impact on both ecological sustainability and economic efficiency. The farm uses 90-95% less water than conventional soil-based agriculture. Additionally, the carefully coordinated placement of lettuce plants in Springworks greenhouses along with the farm’s year-round production cycle and optimized plant nutrition achieves a crops-per-acre increase of about 16 times that of a traditional farm’s yield.
The new facility represents the latest model in a series of experiments with aquaponics that the farm’s 22 year-old founder has been exploring since childhood. Trevor Kenkel was first drawn to the field when he noticed the degradation of the pristine creek he fly-fished in as a child in Montana. After learning that pollution from a nearby farm was responsible, Kenkel started investigating sustainable agriculture. That began a series of projects funded by summer jobs during Kenkel’s high school years. Those experiments culminated in a 2,000-gallon greenhouse system that supplied enough greens to not only feed his family, but also supply a local restaurant as well. The success of those ventures inspired Kenkel’s current academic focus as a junior at Bowdoin College, where he studies biology and economics.
Kenkel’s academic investigation of the aquaponic principles he put into practice allowed him to create a miniaturized version of the models he’s been perfecting for most of his life. The Springworks “Microfarm” ingeniously turns a ten-gallon tank into an aquarium-fitted aquaponics system with everything needed to grow fresh herbs from water exchanged with the aquarium’s fish. Microfarms have been purchased both as entertaining in-home herb gardens and as educational ecosystem models that are used in more than 45 schools in conjunction with its three complementary curriculums.
When asked about future plans for Springworks, Kenkel shares a vision that extends far beyond the local customers who’ve come to depend on the farm for year-round delivery of their fresh, organically-grown lettuce. He delivers that message with the characteristic mix of hard data and personal passion that inspired the investor funding that continues to grow his dream.
“Lettuce is a $3B a year industry, with over 97% of the product grown in, and shipped from, California and Arizona,” Kenkel shares. “The time is ripe to disrupt an agricultural system that no longer works for those who understand the critical need to shift to a more sustainable model for growing food. At Springworks, we look forward to continuing to explore the balance between biological systems and business needs that present the healthiest future for the communities we serve.”
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Other news in this sector:
- 2022-12-01 Race to emission-free greenhouse cultivation pushes growers to keep innovating
- 2022-11-22 Cultivation advisors visit Japan as horticulture tourists
- 2022-11-15 “Here in Türkiye, we heat greenhouses with geothermal water, which is much cheaper than gas”
- 2022-11-11 From supplying retail to the year-round cultivation of natural plant extracts
- 2022-11-11 Former grower Mark Bruinen supports growers in many areas
- 2022-11-09 Singapore: "Rooftop greenhouse made more sense due to lower energy requirements"
- 2022-11-03 “We control the environment entirely – we call it data-oriented cultivation”
- 2022-11-02 Zambia: "We produce 5,000 units of lettuce per week, per tunnel, year-round"
- 2022-10-31 Brassica grower improves yield, plant quality and efficiency
- 2022-10-31 Growing residue-free tomatoes for the Czech Republic market
- 2022-10-31 The rubbish bag is no longer needed: 40 years of advice in bell pepper cultivation
- 2022-10-31 Tomato grower Marc in podcast about trial balloons and lost growing contest over 'lots of crates of beer'
- 2022-10-28 Family business: growing tomatoes in greenhouses for over 60 years with an eye on innovations
- 2022-10-27 Are strawberries the cash crops for the Singapore market?
- 2022-10-24 Ab van Marrewijk bids farewell as Tomatoworld grower
- 2022-10-21 Philippines: New farm and products to be added as demand rises
- 2022-10-20 "Asian vegetables like Shanghai Bok Choy are almost commonplace"
- 2022-10-20 Philippines: Urban footpint and (inter)national aspirations gains interest of local and global investors
- 2022-10-18 Mushrooms' health benefits add to their popularity
- 2022-10-17 Zimbabwe: ‘Africa is ready for innovation by providing easy access to nutritious produce’