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Minneapolis Restaurant’s Basement Tilapia Farm!

See video of aquaponic farm here.

Gandhi Mahal restaurant owner hopes basement aquaponic farm is just the beginning.

By Eric Roper


In a humid room beneath Gandhi Mahal restaurant, local officials watched Thursday as owner Ruhel Islam plunged his arm into a tank and threw a wriggling tilapia into a bucket of ice water. The waste from those 100 fish helps fertilize the surrounding beds of tomatoes, peppers, herbs, celery and spinach.

“Should I go for one more?” Islam asked the crowd, jammed into the 650-square-foot room.

Aquaponics is a growing business in the Twin Cities and across the country, but local operations are typically large-scale production facilities that sell to grocery stores and restaurants. One of the most prominent examples in the urban core is at the former Hamm’s brewery in St. Paul, which is now filled with thousands of fish and plants.

Gandhi Mahal was already known for its sustainability efforts, which Islam says is a reflection of his native Bangladeshi culture. It harvested 10,000 pounds of vegetables last year from about a dozen back-yard gardens within 2 miles. Islam hopes to eventually build a greenhouse on the roof, expand the basement fish operation and possibly even raise chickens at a suburban farm.

Read the complete article here.