Over the years, the techniques of farming have changed. Many new ways of farming have come up. One such method is known as Aquaponic farming. The method combines growing plants with the help of hydroponics and cultivating fish and other aquatic animals in a tank. In Aquaponic farming, the water for the fish tank flows down to the plants, and it carries the excretion of the fish as well. The fish excretion provides nutrients to the plants.
The Journey Of The Founder
Mayank Gupta is the mind behind the start-up, LandCraft Agro. Mayank is an engineer by profession. In 2013, he graduated from IIT Bombay. After graduating, he took up various jobs and businesses in India and abroad. In 2019 he came back to India and decided to become a full-time farmer. He currently runs one of the largest Aquaponic farms in India. The Aquaponic farm is in the Kolhapur district.
Interest In Aquaponic Farming
Mayank mentioned, “ I have lived abroad for 6-7 years. I used to travel a lot and learn about different farming techniques. I had an interest in farming. I learned about Aquaponic farming abroad and then decided to come back to India and give it a try. Aquaponic farming is a form of organic farming.”
The Process of Converting Fish Excretion
The farm covers an area of 2 acres. A big fish tank has been built which consists of over 2000 fish. The fishes are fed daily, and they excrete. Another tank has been built near the large fish tank. All the waste produced by the fish gets collected in the tank. It is the sewage treatment plant. Mayank mentioned, “ The bacteria that is responsible for converting the waste into manure are present in our tanks. It converts the fish waste into manure. Plants are watered using the converted waste and water.”
Water Usage and Consumption
All the tanks together contain an amount of 15 lakh liters of water. The same water is used again and again for running the entire process. The setup has been made in such a way, that changing water isn’t required. A lot of water gets saved through this process. The water is only changed after 2-3 years. On the other hand, the setup requires the consumption of electricity. The big fish tank requires a continuous supply of oxygen to keep the fish alive. Aquaponic farming is a great way to save water. Aquaponic farming uses only 5 percent of water compared to normal farming.
Difference Between Aquaponic Farming and Hydroponic Farming
Mayank mentioned, “ The basic difference between Hydroponic farming and Aquaponic farming is the way nutrients are provided to the plants. In hydroponic farming, chemical fertilizers are added to the plants whereas in Aquaponic farming natural fish excretion is used. So, Aquaponic farming is organic farming. Anyone can use this method of farming if the ideal climate and resources are present. The ideal temperature required for this farming should be between 25 to 35 degrees Celsius. A large setup is not required for farming. Small farmers can also easily use this method.
Types Of Crops
The seeds of a plant are put in a small cup or pot and grown. After it grows a little, the plant sapling is then transferred to the Aquaponic setup. The roots take up the nutrition directly from the water. Various crops are grown including – Spinach, Kale, Lettuce, etc. The vegetables delivered to the customers are organic and available to the customers all year round.LandCraft Agro has collaborated with the government of Maharashtra to teach the farmers the correct way to practice Aquaponic farming. Mad4India wishes LandCraft Agro all the best for all its future endeavors!
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