AMPS Builds New Orleans’ First “Aeroponic” Recirculating Farm, Demonstrates Sustainable Urban Agriculture
February 9, 2012 | seedstock
Press Release – NEW ORLEANS, Feb. 9, 2012 – Today, urban agriculture development company Aquaponic Modular Production Systems (AMPS) debuted its new project – the very first aeroponic farm in New Orleans. Hollygrove Farm and Market is hosting the AMPS design to showcase an innovative way to grow fresh produce for the community sustainably – recirculating farming. Recirculating farms use clean recycled water in place of soil to grow food. “Aeroponics” is one type of these farms, where plants grow in vertical towers. AMPS plans to build many other recirculating farms throughout New Orleans to provide more local sources of healthy food.
Doug Jacobs, founder and lead farm designer said, “When I came to New Orleans, I thought: how could a city so well-known for its cuisine source so little of its produce locally? We can help New Orleans sustainably grow fresh produce and make it more accessible for consumers. We could grow all of the vegetables and herbs used here in a variety of farms throughout the city.”
Beginning the week of February 15th, the new aeroponic farm will provide vegetables for Hollygrove Market and Farm to sell to the community. The system is expected to yield upwards of 40 pounds of greens weekly.
AMPS provides a sustainable alternative approach to agriculture. Their farms have no runoff thanks to a closed-loop design, can efficiently capture and repurpose waste, recycle water to reduce consumption, and are able to grow food virtually anywhere – indoors or outside and in oddly shaped spaces, among other benefits.
AMPS is partnering with the Recirculating Farms Coalition, a national non-profit headquartered in New Orleans and the New Orleans Food and Farm Network, a food justice group, to reach out to locals about the benefits of building recirculating farms.
“Recirculating farming methods, like aeroponics, are becoming very popular worldwide,” said Recirculating Farms Coalition executive director Marianne Cufone. “These efficient, eco-friendly farms create green spaces that provide food for the community; they are ideal for New Orleans, where growing areas may be limited or paved. We are excited to be part of bringing recirculating farms more into the urban farming movement.”
In addition to Doug Jacobs, the AMPS team includes Stephanie Stefanski and Tulane alums Kevin Morgan-Rothschild and Melissa Hew.
AMPS already received a number of recognitions for its farm concepts, winning Tulane’s New Day Challenge in April of 2011 for social innovations and “Audience Favorite” at PitchNOLA 2011.
“We look forward to many more exciting things to come,” Jacobs said.
AMPS designs, builds, and manages soilless farms in urban environments to provide a constant source of fresh produce for grocery stores, restaurants, schools, and other food-suppliers. See: http://www.ampsnola.com