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These principles make the aquaponic growing technique ideal for consideration as both an alternative and supplement to expanding
the local agriculture industry of any community
It is the reason the GYOM™ executive team elected to incorporate an aquaponic food production facility as an ideal ‘proof of concept’ demonstration.

This project is conceived as a template
for replication to build sustainable agricultural capacity in support of a vibrant food economy that fulfills the increasing public demand for “eating locally grown food”.  When this ‘proof of concept’ is fully realized, next steps will require conducting intensive educational outreach to communities throughout Colorado about the potential of aquaponic food production enterprises to improve regional and local economies, job opportunities and securing local food supplies .  The GYOM™ long-term plan includes providing ongoing support statewide to both communities and individual farming enterprises by helping to develop and sustain market linkage via the farming cooperative model for mutual economic benefit, successful technology transfers and market opportunities.

The GYOM's goal for a first project is to provide the research and data mining of aquaponic growing methodologies including the use of renewable energy solutions in aquaponic food production facilities, water usage monitoring, strategies to improve nutritional content of food produced by enhanced fish feeding techniques and implementing innovative daily food production operational techniques.  The effort will develop a template of a business model for small farmers’ operations using aquaponics as their farming technique.  Some of the model’s essential components include:
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GYOM Sustainabilty Graphic
the principles of sustainability
  1. Identify ideal aquaponic food production facility locations
  2. Achieve permitting  approvals respecting local ordinances + zoning laws
  3. How to choose and implement  renewable energy techniques
  4. Determine aquaponic greenhouse growing + head house sizing
  5. Determine aquaponic greenhouse system components
  6. Execute a market study + development (define your market as the entire community)
  7. Fish + produce growing choices costs + profitable market opportunities
  8. How to grow the healthiest and most nutritious fish and plants
  9. Build alliances with potential customers
  10. Food Production construction techniques
    Startup management strategies
  11. Operations management and monitoring plans
  12. Develop labor sources and job training methodologies
  13. Develop sustainable business practices
The mission of Grow Your Own Meal™ (GYOM™) is to operate an incubator for the development of advanced food production technologies.  The incubator is organized to promote appropriate technology transfers of food production techniques that support the sustainable operations of diverse, energy efficient and secure food production facilities.  The first project of GYOM™ is to design, build and operate a community based, “proof of concept” food production facility.  The central focus of the growing environment is aquaponics, the symbiotic cultivation of plants and aquatic animals in a recirculating environment.    The food production facility design will incorporate renewable energy sources, as well as energy and water usage efficiencies to lower the high operating costs associated with growing food indoors. 

Aquaponics serves as an integrated and sustainable food production model by adopting the following principles:

  • The waste products of one biological system (aquaculture) serve as nutrients for a second biological system (hydroponics).
  • Water is re-used efficiently through biological filtration and a recirculation environment, decreasing overall water usage and runoff.
  • The synergistic growing of organic vegetables and fish provide a complete diet source, enhance local crop diversity, improve crop yields and support specialty crop production.
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grow your own meal, inc., a Colorado-based 501(C)3 non-profit  | copyright 2016 all rights reserved

The GYOM mission is to develop, promote and teach sustainable, healthy food production solutions utilizing renewable energy and energy efficiencies, less water for food production and state-of-art plant science, technology and engineering.