AquaPonics in Austria
  Aquaponics / Aquaponik in Austria ... Sustainable Agriculture

aquaponics austria

Project sponsored by the GesundheitsVerein of Austria

 

 

Aquaponics / Aquaponik

Aquaponics /ˈækwəˈpɒnɨks/ is a sustainable food production system that combines a traditional aquaculture (raising aquatic animals such as snails, fish, crayfish or prawns in tanks) with hydroponics (cultivating plants in water) in a symbiotic environment. In aquaculture, effluents accumulate in the water, increasing toxicity for the fish. This water is led to a hydroponic system where the by-products from the aquaculture are filtered out by the plants as vital nutrients, after which the cleansed water is recirculated back to the animals. The term aquaponics is a portmanteau of the terms aquaculture and hydroponic. 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


AquaPonics in Austria/Österreich

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Aquaponics ... spelled Aquaponik in the German language is the use of aquaculture and hydroponics to produce organic vegetables and healthy disease free fish.  While both of these farming techniques exist in Austria, the combination of the two is rarely seen.

The founders of the GesundheitsVererin have done great deal of research on aquaponics in the United States and came to the conclusion that Aquaponics is the sustainable agriculture of the future.  The United States, Canada and Australia are leading the world on development of aquaponic  technology.  Whether you farm in a warm climate or cold, the bottom line is that plants grown using the aquaponic method are far superior to those farmed by other means.  The plants grow quicker, larger, healthier and without the use of pesticides. In addition, aquaponics is the world’s most productive food system in terms of water use.

aquaponics austria sustainable agriculture

It almost seems too good to be true … so how does all this work?  In simple terms, aquaponics is a closed system.  The water from your fish tank moves through a planting grow bed where the nutrients from the fish waste ie., fish fertilizer, nourish the plants … the plants filter the water and then return  it to the fish tank in a clean state … and this cycle repeats.  The plants get their nourishment easily as the nutrient rich water flows around the root system.  In traditional farming using soil, the plant root system has to spread out and search for nutrients ... with aquaponics the plants can use their energy to grow larger and healthier because the need to search for their nutrients is eliminated.

  • Fish are raised in a tank or pond
  • Water from the fish tank is pumped or gravity fed to the plants
  • Bacteria that occurs naturally converts ammonia and nitrite to nitrate
  • Plants absorb the nutrient rich water
  • Filtered water is returned to the fish tank, clean and ready for the cycle to continue!

aquaponics austria sustainable agriculture 2

There are four primary methods for growing food aquaponically:

1.Raft method: The raft method grows plants on boards (rafts) in tanks separate from the fish tank, where the raft supports the plants and the roots of the plants sit directly in the water. Water flows constantly from the fish tank, through filters, through the rafts, and then back to the fish tank. This method is used commercially and the extra volume of water in the raft tank is a benefit as it provides a buffer for the fish so they are not stressed by possible water quality problems.

2. Nutrient film technique (or NFT):  With the nutrient film technique, instead of growing the plants in tanks with their roots submerged in the water, the NFT trickles a thin film of water over the roots of the plants, which are grown in narrow channels. This method is not used as heavily as the other two methods because it requires a biofilter to provide additional nitrifying bacteria.

3. Media-filled bed method: In the media-filled bed method, the plants grow in a box filled with a growth medium, such as perlite or gravel. Water from the fish tank is pumped into the box where the media acts as a mechanical and biofilter.  It is then pumped back to the fish tank ...  "cleaned" and ready for the fish.

4. Vertical towers ... specifically zip grow towers.  Using a special media matrix it offers huge bio filtration benefits to vertical farmers/gardeners with the integration of redworms into the Matrix Media. By allowing the worms to inhabit the towers, growers are able to better manage the solids naturally floating around in their systems. This type of bio filtration works so well that there is no need for other mechanical filtration .  The towers are made in the good old USA from food-grade PVC.  The specially designed Matrix Media has a silicone binder that limits exposure of the water to the plastic. It’s made from recycled water bottles and is designed to be very safe.


For our project in Austria, we felt that the zip towers were the best choice for us.  The climate can be harsh for several months of the year and greenhouses need to be heated... it only makes sense to figure out a way to grow more food in a smaller space to keep heating costs down.

The zip towers give us the "biggest bang for our buck"!

aquaponics aquaponik austria zip grow towers grow vertically

To sum it up ... aquaponics /aquaponik is a sustainable, abundant, and soil free food growing system that produces crops 365 days a year!

 


The GesundheitsVerein is a non-profit health organization located in Austria.

This platform is used to bring the best health information available online as well as off line to YOU.

Aquaponics in Austria is our newest project that will bring sustainable agriculture to Austria.  A teaching facility needs to be constructed.

Our first priority is to design and build a greenhouse that will be heated to withstand the cold Austrian winters.

All donations are welcome!

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