Australia: UNSW Founders event hands first prize to modular aquaponics idea

Last weekend, UNSW Founders held the exciting Sustainable Urban Agriculture and Food Planning Hackathon. During this 2.5 day Hackathon, participants were tasked with exploring how they could create low cost, low energy, accessible and sustainable urban agricultural solutions for continuous food production to provide for the growing population of New Delhi.

As a developing and growing population, India faces the struggle of food security and sustainability. Although a very challenging problem to tackle alone, students were given continuous support and guidance from industry experts. Some of which include Dr. Veljko Prodanovic; a research associate at the water research centre, Dr. Soumi Paul Mukhopadhyay; a sensory and consumer research scientist of horticulture at NSW Department of Primary Industries and Serena Lee; co-founder of Farmwall.

The Hackathon was a major success having an amazing turnout of almost 50 students from different disciplines of study. 9 teams were formed with a high level of engagement from the mentors and the enthusiasm of the participants to come up with some great ideas. Students who participated also came from India's Institute of Technology as part of UNSW Founder's aim to increase relations to international countries.

The top ideas were awarded with various prizes to potentially support these solutions. The first place prize ($3000 Cash) was given to Team Plantra for their solution of integrating modular aquaponics for underutilized land in urban environments in Delhi, India.

The second place prize went to Team Fresh DelHi who suggested a fresh packaging system to store and preserve wheat made of biodegradable materials with tracking QR and indicator to track quality.

The third place prize was given to Team KasaniX who suggested a decentralised agricultural supply chain in India using an AI based platform to save costs for farmers.

Source: UNSW Sydney (Duong)

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