NRW aquaponics networking meeting

NRW Vernetzungstreffen Aquaponik 2017
NRW aquaponics networking meeting in 2017

This is followed by the report of our participation in the "Aquaponics Networking Meeting in North Rhine-Westphalia" that took place on May 18, 2017 in Wuppertal. We had the opportunity to present our company and take part in the panel discussion.

The meeting for those interested in and ambitious aquaponics in North Rhine-Westphalia
The meeting was organized as part of a cooperation between the Arrenbergfarm in Wuppertal and the association die Urbanisten e.V., supported by the Agricultural Department of the South Westphalia University of Applied Sciences in Soest. The venue was the Villa Media in Wuppertal. Although the meeting only lasted one day, many specialist presentations were given by interesting speakers. We also had the opportunity there to present our company in a short speech. The meeting was moderated briefly but confidently by Pascal Biesenbach (Klimaquartier Arrenberg / VPP).

The following is a brief outline of the other lectures of the day:

  • What is aquaponics? - Rolf Morgenstern (University of Applied Sciences South Westphalia)
    A brief introduction to aquaponics with an overview of how it works and its various possible forms.
  • URBAN GREEN TRAIN project - Bernd Pölling (URBAN GREEN TRAIN)
    As part of the project, educational offers on innovative solutions for everything to do with urban agriculture are essentially conveyed. This includes an intensive exchange between science and business. The project is financed by the EU's Erasmus program. (URBAN GReen Education for ENTeRprising Agricultural InnovatioN)
  • Fish health and animal welfare - Rolf Morgenstern (University of Applied Sciences South Westphalia)
    Another very interesting lecture, which was improvised for a speaker who was unable to attend, which did not detract from the lecture. It was about the necessary requirements for handling fish (proof of "proper fish keeping") and how diseases can be avoided in aquaculture and what the appropriate therapies look like, when quarantine is necessary, etc.
  • Klima Expo.NRW – Dr. Michael Walter (Klima Expo.NRW)
    An interesting lecture about the project that consists of many individual "flagship projects". The measures are very different and range from wind farms and sustainable building management to sustainable waste management. The projects can be downloaded from the Project card from KlimaExpo.NRW.
  • aquaponik manufaktur gmbh
    An overview of our goals and the current tasks and projects.
  • Integrated pest management - Dr. rer. nat. Peter Dapprich (University of Applied Sciences South Westphalia)
    This lecture examined the side of plant culture in more detail. As an expert in hydroponics, Mr. Dapprich went into the requirements of different plants and reported on how various deficiencies as well as oversupply of nutrients are expressed in plant culture. But the lecture also contained many interesting facts to assess the possibilities of aquaponics.
  • Aquaponics and sozial work – Yvonne Fischer (Dipl. Soz. Päd., Köln)
    The focus was on the question of the possibilities that exist for aquaponics in connection with social work, for example in the form of social projects in which inclusion, reintegration or occupational therapy measures could be combined with the sustainable production of food. The combination met with great interest from the audience.
  • Project Arrenbergfarm – Jörg Heynkes (Project Arrenbergfarm)
    This project includes a large number of measures that are to be implemented on the approx. 60 hectare former federal railway site. In addition to aquaponic facilities, processing companies are also to be located, such as Breweries and restaurants that process sustainably cultivated foods.
  • Plantastisch –  Niels Rehkop
    Niels Rehkop presented the recently completed prototype of an aquaponic system, which he and Tobias Seifert want to bring to market under the name Plantastik. First of all, it was about the requirements for such a system and the questions which work is reasonable or possible for end users. After the meeting, the topic was continued
  • Aquaponics at the Soest University of Applied Sciences Rolf Morgenstern
    This project was about the aquaponic facility at the South Westphalia University of Applied Sciences. In addition to the large amount of technical information about the fish and plants cultivated there, we were also interested in the information about costs and profitability, which were also discussed.
  • Food Safety Dr. Eberhard Büker
    A lecture about the dangers u. Problems that may arise in connection with the production of food. Using many examples from the past (such as EHEC), both important information and tips were discussed.

    After the meeting at Villa Media, all participants went to the parking lot together to view the display of the “Aufbruch Arrenberg” initiative. This facility consists of an ocean-going container and has a greenhouse. The system principle is already known, as it was already in this construction as a "farm box" on the premises of ECF Farmsystems (see picture below).

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