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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '13, 06:00 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Of particular interest is the scale of the operation. Apparently over 2ac. With more greenhouses to fill that are currently vacant on the 10ac block.

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '13, 08:23 
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Ryan makes comment in this article and may know more..
http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/ci_238 ... aquaponics

Seems the two involved have little aquaponic experience from what I can find on the net, a couple of contractors tapping into the market, needles to say they seem to be getting things done. The article mentions that the site once was a failed aquaponic farm back in 2009 - 2011 and these guys are having another crack. Someone must be advising the build you would think.

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '13, 08:44 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Well for two guys that don't know anything it seems that they are getting good growth.

Mind you a good photo shoot can hide a lot.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 06:21 
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Interesting concept to kill bugs with carbon dioxide from wood burning unit. Going to have to sell a lot of plants to pay off that bank note. I wish them all the best, but feel Ryan right about the size. Even if the production is perfect, marketing and delivery is going to be tough on a project that size.


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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 07:15 
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Well, let's all wish them luck! Watsonville has a decent labor pool for agriculture. I used to go there regularly as the headquarters for West Marine, where I work, is there.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 07:20 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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I'm surprised by those comments attributed to Ryan.

He would seem to be saying that large scale production is not economical. Given the advantages of economies of scale and Ryan's knowledge of the industries (AQ and AP) I find it hard to believe that he has been quoted correctly.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 07:23 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Re CO2 to kill pests, that makes no sense to me at all.

[CO2] required to kill insects are much higher than those needed to kill people or fish. Plus you have to maintain those levels for a lot longer than you do for any vertebrate.

Even if you could seal the GH for long enough for it to work the fish would be dead and the OH&S issues would be a nightmare.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 07:32 
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What he said sounded like him. He has always been about quality over quantity. His greenhouse is run by one person. The labor involved for two acres is considerably more. He sells his produce at a premium, and the market for premium food is relatively small. At that scale you are competing with larger farms. Watsonville is a center for vegetable production, so hopefully they can move it wholesale there, and be able to focus on growing, as opposed to selling.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 07:37 
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Makes sense Ron. Interesting to find out if the numbers will work selling wholesale vs. large dirt growers using cheap labor. I like Ryan's business plan better. Quality product, quality price, but a limited market...like you said.
Gotta go hit some tennis balls and work off this Christmas food. talk later.


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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 07:42 
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And the proposed system size would require more automated production lines much the way the system in Sydney has with rotating rafts to become more stream line and effective. The labour involed with planting and harvesting would be massive with big sheets of raft material.

Its very early days for them and I think they will realise soon that the design layout is not economical for the proposed end size.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 07:47 
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It was more the suggestion that large scale operations were not viable. A decision to market directly is one thing, saying that small scale is more viable than large is another.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 21:21 
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As to my comment on this, this is the call I get:

"Hi this is so and so from Santacruz Sentinal, can I ask you a few questions?"
"have you heard about this new AP instillation in California? It's going to be the biggest in the world! They are growing sturgeon in 40-50, 200 gal tanks and will be harvesting caviar in 3 years, main crop is lettuce. It's run by a construction worker who quit his day job, teamed up with a wealthy investor and they say they have created a working model that is going to take the world by storm! They're also going to be teaching courses at their facility..."

I'm sorry but I think I let out an audible laugh after hearing this... Sturgeon in 200 gal tanks? Caviar in 3 yrs? A model everyone is going to copy but they aren't producing yet?

Every week I hear about the new "biggest AP install in the world". I didn't know any names of people involved, didn't know anything else about the design other than what was mentioned and sorry to say but it didn't sound like a recipe for success. I also talked to them for about 15-20 min about my thoughts on the commercialization of AP, and they took like 2 lines for there article. I agree it came off fairly negative which was not my intention but seeing as how the article was written it seems that was the writers intention all along (who was laughing telling me she doubts this will be around in another year!). So many people are trying to get that badge of honor that says "biggest in the world!" and invest a ton of money into large systems but then they go and design them using backyard principles.

Do I think large scale AP is possible? Sure do... But its going to be from someone that has designed it using known and proven Aquaculture, Hydroponic, and Aquaponic techniques, technologies and theories.

I also believe in the decentralization of farming and in bringing local farms back to a profitable enterprise. It's never going to be easy to compete with a guy that is farming 500 acres of field lettuce on the commercial market. If we prove the nutritional quality of local grown AP produce, the health benefits of fresh produce, carbon footprint reduction, local job creation, water reduction and sustainability of what we are doing....I think the future is bright.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 21:41 
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Funny how the media seldom let the facts get in the way of a story.

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PostPosted: Dec 27th, '13, 22:05 
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Slowboat-I wish there was a "like" button on here. Of the few times that I have been quoted, only 1 reporter actually got them in the intended order. lol


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PostPosted: Dec 28th, '13, 04:12 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Yep that sounds more like it. Very common to have your comments taken out of context.

At least they are in a GH and not a warehouse. If the investors pockets are deep enough then they will be able to learn from their mistakes and make it work.

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