Is it possible to produce fresh fish and vegetables at home, with this home aquaponics system (grow lab) yes! This ancient system can be traced back to Aztec times and is widely used in Asia.
Even a half barrel sized container,with the correct aquaponic system can produce fresh green Chinese cabbage and delicious trout from the same vessel, but obviously not a large crop. For self sufficiency you will need a proper home aquaponics system.
The system for producing food combining normal aquaculture,(the raising of water reared foods) such as fish,shellfish,eels and molluscs with hydroponics the soil free production of fruit and vegetables and the dual production of live fresh water fish and fruit and vegetables becomes Aquaponics.
Normally in self contained fish raising areas the excreta of the water living crop builds up and increases the toxicity to an unsustainable level. In the Home Aquaponics system these waste products are reduced by bacterial action, from the fish waste and turns it into ammonia. The bacteria then break this down into useful nitrites which the crop of fruit and vegetables take in as nutrients. The clean water is then used again in Aquaponic fish production.
To start you will obviously need the aquaponics system, power and light. Once you have this set up in your glasshouse or garden area you just need to purchase the fish and your choice of vegetable or fruit plants. Of course you can always sell your excess to finance the original capital outlay as well as the minimal running costs.
The benefits of your own home aquaponics system are many,for example a broad choice of fish,fresh water shellfish and molluscs are a viable crop so you could choose,crayfish,prawns or tilapia. Also the list of plants is huge,lettuce,bell peppers,tomatoes,strawberries as well as herbs.The list is ever growing and all is possible in your yard, because the amount of food raised in a very small area from your aquaponics system is unbelievable.
There is a world wide network of forums,communities and suppliers. The benefits are many but the main one is knowing that you can grow the system as your knowledge base and experience increases. It can be undertaken by a complete novice and age is not a problem.There is no digging or weeding and you definitely don’t need compost, as your fish are supplying that for you so it really is set up and watch them grow.
Although this is an age old production method with new technology and improvement in bacterial knowledge it really can be a novel experience. More importantly it is the knowledge that your wholesome home produced food has no impact on the environment and there are no harmful pesticides or GM worries to think about. It really is the best natural recycling method for food production.