Have you ever heard of Aquaponics? It’s a new form of farming, without soil. It’s where food is grown in water that is filled with fish.  In an aquaponic system, water from an aquaculture system is fed to a hydroponic system where the by-products are broken down by nitrogen-fixing bacteria into nitrates and nitrites, which are used by the plants as nutrients.  The water is then recirculated back to the aquaculture system.

Both the plants and the fish receive benefits, the plants receive nutrients from the fish waste, and the plants purify the water for the fish. In states like Florida, where there is a significant water challenge, this farming is very beneficial. The process actually uses 90% less water than traditional farmer.

The SouthEast Economic Development (SEED) Foundation, which focuses on growing a profitable agricultural industry and building healthy communities, is heavily supporting the initiative. The foundation will use Aquaponics to promote nutritional initiatives through the education system. SEED will recommend the establishment of an Aquaponics Academy Program with age appropriate interaction plans for Head Start, elementary, middle, and high schools, as well as local colleges.

Farmers aren’t the only ones exploring the new concept. Quite a few companies offer home Aquaponics kits that offer a family-fun project.