Well for some time I’ve followed the development of Aquaponics here in Australia and watched with delight as people like Joel, Faye, and many other devotees have quietly gone about spreading the word and furthering the development of backyard aquaponics and bringing food production back home.
Commercially, businesses and individuals like Wilson Lennard, Geoff Orpin of Barramundi Blue, the principals of Tailormade, and Geoff Wilson, to name just a few, have gone about the business and personal pursuit of aquaponics with sometimes great, sometimes mixed success, but often without recognition
Geoff Wilson, who has been involved in the industry for many, many years for instance, has tried for many years to get the Aquaponic Network of Australia off the ground, but appears to have had little success.
Wilson Lennard despite being an academic pioneer of aquaponics seems to have had mixed success in commercialising the concept.
Joel Malcolm, and more recently Faye Arcaro have both achieved significant media exposure and recognition. As have many other individual members of the Backyard Aquaponics community through individual displays, meetings and grants proposals like that put forward successfully by the teachers and students of the Peace Lutheran College.
While all the individual successes and spreading of awareness about aquaponics has been heart warming, it would perhaps seem time to see the emergence of a dedicated body devoted to aquaponics and the pursuit of it’s development.
So it was great enthusiasm that I can upon an organization and website seemingly devoted to just that cause.
Global Aquaponics Network for Research And Development (GANRAD)
The organization has listed contact details as follows ….
Phone : (07) 3123 4048
Fax : (07) 3266 3647
Post : PO Box 276, Nundah Qld 4012
No contact name or address location was available on the website.
It would appear from reference on the website, that the organisation is at least partially sponsored in some regard by the “Aquaponics Shop” which would appear to share some involvement, a common postal box and perhaps premises. Perhaps additional information might be available by contacting that organisation.
While the ideals espoused by this fledgling organisation are indeed worthy and lofty, sadly I get the impression from the website that it appears to be a self appointed, self-promoting and self-interested organisation with an almost “secretive” charter.
This impression might be mis-represented by the sheer “newness” of the organisation and web-site, but I would have thought that such an organisation would have been born out of much discussion between the principals of the aquaponics movement both here in Australia and even worldwide and would be openly advertising its personnel, board members, accreditation panel and criteria and the credentials of the founding members.
Sadly nowhere on the website is there displayed any information regarding the founders of this organisation, their credentials, expertise or references from anybody in the field of aquaponics.
Nor is there any defined or displayed “accreditation” criteria for the proposed professional accreditations.
Nor any criteria displayed indicating necessary requirements by the un-named “board” in order for anyone to be nominated.
Which by the way must be initially done by a least two members of the “unknown” and un-named board, in order to gain entry regardless of the various level of membership proposed.
One could perhaps have expected, given the sheer size of the membership of this forum, the work done by the founder of this site and many other members, the number of personal contacts and networking that has grown through this site and others, that there would have been at least some official announcement of this fledgling organization to the members of this and other forums and an invitation extended for members to sign up.
Or indeed that some wider publicity of the proposed formation of the organization within the aquaponics community at large would have occurred. No such announcement would appear to be anywhere on the public record.
Nobody, either within this forum or the wider aquaponics community, it would seem has in fact had any prior knowledge of this organisation at all.
So I call upon those nameless, faceless founders of this worthy ideal to reveal themselves publicly and to put forward their aims and objectives for public debate and scrutiny and to extend to all the aquaponics community an “open” and transparent invitation to join and grow the organisation.
Secondly, please list the founding members, board members and their credentials so that the aquaponics public at large may have confidence that those occupying the role of overseeing this body and defining accreditation standards are themselves both knowledgeable and worthy of their position and role.
Thirdly please list and seek comment on the criteria requirement for various levels of membership.
Fourthly, please list and invite comment regrading the criteria requirement for the various levels of accreditation.