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Space Farming: NASA looks to grow fresh veggies

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NASA’s Nicole Dufour (left) and Gioia Massa perform prelaunch testing on lettuce sprouts, under LED grow lights. Photograph by Stephen Allen.

No one is allowed to eat anything before the plants are thoroughly vetted for cosmic microbes.

By Jesse Hirsch
Modern Farming
September 10, 2013
(Must read. Mike)

Excerpt:

Levine and Massa are part of the team developing the Vegetable Production System (VEGGIE) program, set to hit the ISS later this year. This December, NASA plans to launch a set of Kevlar pillow-packs, filled with a material akin to kitty litter, functioning as planters for six romaine lettuce plants. The burgundy-hued lettuce (NASA favors the “Outredgeous” strain) will be grown under bright-pink LED lights, ready to harvest after just 28 days.

NASA has a long history of testing plant growth in space, but the goals have been largely academic. Experiments have included figuring out the effects of zero-gravity on plant growth, testing quick-grow sprouts on shuttle missions and assessing the viability of different kinds of artificial light. But VEGGIE is NASA’s first attempt to grow produce that could actually sustain space travelers.

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October 2, 2013   Comments Off on Space Farming: NASA looks to grow fresh veggies

£500,000 aquaponic farm on a rooftop in the city of Basel in Switzerland

drva
Dr Valentini Pappa, an SRUC (Scotland’s Rural College) researcher currently working with Zurich University of Applied Science.

The system will provide 60kg of fish and 120kg of vegetables annually.

Farming UK
27-09-2013

Excerpt:

In a presentation given by Dr Valentini Pappa, an SRUC researcher currently working with Zurich University of Applied Science, the possibilities and practicalities of urban farming were explored. Dr Pappa’s team helped develop a £500,000 aquaponic farm on a rooftop in the city of Basel in Switzerland with the aim of studying how successful the system could be.

Aquaponic farms combine fish breeding and vegetable growing in a no soil hydroponic system. They produce little to no waste, require minimal fertilisers or pesticides and can produce crops throughout the year.

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October 2, 2013   Comments Off on £500,000 aquaponic farm on a rooftop in the city of Basel in Switzerland

Stepney City Farm in London

danny

Visiting A City Farm For Urban Food Fortnight

By Food Urchin
Great British Chefs
17 September 2013

Excerpt:

Situated on a former bomb site, Stepney City Farm has been operating as a community farm in London’s East End since 1979, albeit with limited success and in 2009 it faced closure. Luckily, some local residents stepped in with a renewed focus and set up the farm with charity status. With no amount of hard work and an injection of cash from the National Lottery, the farm is now fully functional with lofty plans for the future.

Grazing on its four acres there are chickens, donkeys, ducks, ferrets, geese, Guinea pigs, sheep, pigs, quails, rabbits, cows and goats.

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October 2, 2013   Comments Off on Stepney City Farm in London