US (IL): Ivy Tech get ready to launch aquaponic farm

Inside an upstairs room at Ivy Tech Community College’s East Chicago location, something surprising soon will greet visitors and students — an aquaponics system in which tilapia will help produce buttercrunch lettuce and fresh basil.

This isn’t something one would expect in a building that sits amid north Lake County industries, but LaMont Mitchell, a science tutor at the campus, hails it as a fine example of urban agriculture.

“Aquaponics provides a way for people in food deserts to grow fresh vegetation in their own home,” Mitchell, who is researching aquaponics as a pre-med student at Chicago State University, said.

Mitchell points out other benefits of aquaponics, such as use by communities to sell or barter vegetation or fish with each other and farmers who could grow produce year-round.

Read the full article at Chicago Tribune (Donna Kiesling)

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