USDA Voluntary G.A.P. Program

By Tawnya Sawyer The USDA recently recognized aquaponics under their voluntary Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) program through the Specialty Crops Inspection (SCI) division. This program is in its pilot phase for audits and certification of selected aquaponics farms through the end of 2020. Having a set of guidelines for aquaponics helps to better align with the specifics […]

Continue Reading

USDA Launches Innovative Ag Office – Announces $3M Grants

By Thomas Wheet and Brian Filipowich The 2018 U.S. Farm Bill charged the USDA with creating the Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production (“Urban Ag Office”). The Farm Bill noted that urban agriculture can “contribute to the revitalization of abandoned or underutilized urban land, [bring] social and economic benefits to urban communities, and [create] […]

Continue Reading

Improving the profitability and sustainability of indoor leafy-greens production

A multi-university team of horticulturists, engineers and agricultural economists led by Michigan State University (MSU) has received a four-year, $2.7 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to study indoor production of leafy greens. Industry partners have matched funding, bringing the project total to $5.4 million. The investigators on the grant include: Erik Runkle, […]

Continue Reading
Congress funds USDA Urban Ag Office

Congress Funds Office of Urban & Innovative Agriculture

By Brian Filipowich Originally posted by the Aquaponics Association The new Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production created by the 2018 Farm Bill had been sitting in limbo for the past year. The USDA declined to establish it without dedicated funding from Congress. On December 20, 2019, the President signed into law H.R. 1865, The […]

Continue Reading

2019 Aquaponics Food Safety Statement

Originally published at https://aquaponicsassociation.org/2019-aquaponics-food-safety-statement/ The Aquaponics Association presents the 2019 Aquaponics Food Safety Statement, signed by over 130 organizations, including 98 from the U.S. This statement explains the food safety credentials of produce grown in aquaponic systems. PDF version: 2019 Aquaponics Food Safety Statement December 9, 2019Aquaponics Food Safety Statement Established Science Confirms Aquaponic Fish and Produce […]

Continue Reading

TAKE ACTION: Tell Congress to Support USDA Urban / Innovative Ag Office

From the Aquaponics Association By the end of this week (Friday, Nov 15) please call or email your two senators and one representative and ask them to Support the new USDA Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production. In the next week or two, Congress will decide whether or not to fund the USDA’s new Office […]

Continue Reading

Making the switch to hemp—what should you consider?

Now that it is legal to grow hemp in the U.S., greenhouse vegetable and ornamental plant growers are considering whether it makes sense to switch crops. The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, commonly referred to as the 2018 Farm Bill, has legalized the production of hemp. The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is the lead USDA […]

Continue Reading

USDA Vertical ag workshop report

On June 27 and 28, 2018 the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Energy co-hosted a workshop in Washington, D.C. The workshop engaged stakeholders, experts, and researchers from across the United States in interdisciplinary discussions on the potential for indoor agriculture (IA), in the context of sustainable urban ecosystems, to address global environmental challenges. Participants collaborated […]

Continue Reading

Legal action taken to force USDA to revoke certification of container, hydroponic, and aquaponic production systems

Center for Food Safety Files Petition with USDA to Revoke Existing Organic Certification for Nearly All Microgreens and Significant Volumes of Berries, Tomatoes and Leafy Greens BY THE COALITION FOR SUSTAINABLE ORGANICS The Center for Produce Safety delivered a petition to the U.S. Department of Agriculture calling for the USDA to Issue new regulations prohibiting […]

Continue Reading

Farm Bill Creates Office for Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production

The 2018 Farm Bill (H.R.2) passed both the House and Senate and will be signed into law by the President imminently. The Bill creates the USDA Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production which should boost aquaponics, hydroponics, and other sustainable growing methods. The Bill establishes the Office “to encourage and promote urban, indoor, and other emerging […]

Continue Reading

Researchers seek your input with culinary herb survey

University researchers are seeking input from potted and fresh cut culinary herb growers in order to initiate a national research and extension project aimed to address the needs of the emerging industry. Your anonymous input for our survey will help to steer the focus of this project. Currently, researchers from Michigan State University, Purdue University, […]

Continue Reading

3 Things to Fight For in the Farm Bill

Article by The Upstart University Team The Farm Bill is moving in Congress and could impact your farm. As you may have learned in our previous post, Congress typically rewrites the Farm Bill every five years and is currently in the process of writing a new Farm Bill with the goal of passing it by the […]

Continue Reading

USDA Releases Materials for Fall National Organic Standards Board Meeting

From the Coalition for Sustainable Organics The USDA has published the pre-meeting materials on their website for the Fall 2018 National Organic Standards Board meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota to be held from October 24-26.  The Discussion Documents and Formal Proposals do NOT include anything specific to greenhouse, container, hydroponic, aeroponic or aquaponic production systems. Those topics remain on […]

Continue Reading

Upstart Farmers wants you to know some important facts about The Farm Bill

Article by Amy Storey, Upstart Farmers In a recent survey conducted by Upstart University, 70% of respondents stated that they were unsure of whether the Farm Bill would impact their [future] business. Yet ironically all respondents plan on investing in some kind of energy-efficient equipment in the next year, whether that’s lighting, HVAC, pumps, or motors. […]

Continue Reading