Aquaponic Gardening

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With all the commentary lately about food safety and such with aquaponics, Perhaps we need a thread that will let us work out our priorities.

 

What tests/studies should we do first?

And

Perhaps even more important, what methods, criteria, etc whatever do we need to make sure are covered by these studies?

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It is very difficult to test for organisms u nless you know whwt you are looking for.  Every bacteria has its own special needs and unless that is supplied in the media used it will never grow.  some time you to know what it can survive on and others can't.  We put salt into Mannitol Salt Agar to grow out Staphylococcus because it can stand the salt and other bacteria can't.  We put blood in our common human organism growth plates because most organisms require some of the contents of blood to grow.  Because we do not know what we want to grow out of the water it would really be difficult.  Because you  know you want to look for LAB you could find a medium that would grow it.

     Wanted to commit on the Listeria problem first . A friend of mine who lives about 50 miles for the area told me the real problem came from a manure spreader parked next to the packing house and a mud puddle backed into the floor of the packing house.This said not washing the fruit the contaimates were spread when cutting the melons open. Next, yes people who produce food have to be ready to answer questions that actually donot refer to them so your assements are right about having answers before the questions are asked.  LF
Raychel A Watkins said:

Has anyone looked into what has been done on aquaponic systems?  A lot of Universities are now sponsering a program in there corsces.  What about UVI?  They have been running systems for decades.  What would you test?  You have thousands of gallons of water.  What is in 1 drop may not be the same in any other drop.  This is a research project and can not be carried out by the average aquapon.  What is in my system is no proof of what is in Chris's system.  He is right about starting where we are and understanding what is happening.  As long as we comply with food safety guidelines we should be alright.  Did you see what they think caused the Listeria outbreak in the mellons?  It was old and dirty equiptment being used.  If they had used the proper guidelines they might never have gotten into the problem they have.  A soil gardner can only follow the rules and hope nothing happens.  He can not go out and test his soil for pathogens.  The pathogen may be there but in very small quantities.  There is no magic test to find it in 1 acre or 1000 acres.  When the pathogen is taken in by the host (human) then it begins to grow.  These are human and animal pathogens they need the correct nutrients and temp to flourish.  Our water and fish do not provide that.  But the dirty bugger can hang around for a while until it finds its proper host. 

When I plate an organism in the lab I have to know where the specimen was taken so that I can kind of know what type of organism to expect and use the appropriate media to exclude most other organsims?  I saw a Mystery Diagnosis progrem the other day where this man had a cut on his hand (small cut)  it began to grow and grow.  The doctor tried to culture it but he said it wasn't an infection because it didn't grow.  The hand and arm got relly bad with lesions all the way up his arm.  The Doctor said he needed to cut off the arm or he might die.  The wife pleaded not to do so.  Then the man became septic.  Guess what it was an infection.  It was a Mycobacterium organism that lives in fish aquariums.  He had the cut stuck his hand in the aquarium and almost lost his life.  Why didn't it grow out in the lab or why didn't it stain on a smear?  Here is the secret Mycobacterium only grow on special media and they are very slow growing.  They also don't stain with the normal Gram stain.  They need an acid fast stain.  These were not used because they did not suspect the organism that finally was found.  I say all this to support what Chris said.  To put it bluntly we have to know what we are doing.  You can not culture every plant in your system.  Food safety practices are the way to go.

By the way M tuberculosis takes 6 weeks on a special medium to grow big enough to see the colony.  E coli takes 24 hours to be able it see the colony. They now use molecular techniques to id Mycobacterium

There are many bacteria that are in the order of Lactobacillales. I guess that each individual bacteria would have to be tested for. I am most interested in Lactobacillus but am curious about many others. Do you know of any tests for Lactobacillus? Does being  gram positive help with testing?

I foung out the hard way that Staphylococcus is tolerant to salt water. After first moving to Hawaii I went surfing with a deep cut that was kept very clean. After surfing the cut developed a horrible staff infection. The doc told me staff lives in the ocean.
Raychel A Watkins said:

It is very difficult to test for organisms u nless you know whwt you are looking for.  Every bacteria has its own special needs and unless that is supplied in the media used it will never grow.  some time you to know what it can survive on and others can't.  We put salt into Mannitol Salt Agar to grow out Staphylococcus because it can stand the salt and other bacteria can't.  We put blood in our common human organism growth plates because most organisms require some of the contents of blood to grow.  Because we do not know what we want to grow out of the water it would really be difficult.  Because you  know you want to look for LAB you could find a medium that would grow it.

When someone sticks up their nose at aquaponics when I mention using fish effluence to grow veggies, all I have to say is it has been done for thousands of years in some countries - http://www.yale.edu/macmillan/pier/resources/lessons/apdxii.pdf

I look forward to collecting (and sharing), data once I am up and running.

If I remember (which is hard sometimes for me to do I will take some water to work and spin it and Gram stain it.  Just to see how many types of bacteria might be there.  Lactobacillus is what they use in yogurt also in the IMO's they make there on the big island.  Master Cho uses them in his Natural Farming.   I think I will take a picture of the other critters in the water just to have a scary movie.  

While I am at it Chris where did you get your fiberglass  cloth and how wide was it?Mahalo

Lactobacillus is a key component of IMO's, EM, Bocachi and many other similar products. Lactobacillus is used in natural farming of livestock to eliminate orders form their waste products. The reason I am so curious about Lactobacillus in the system is because I have been spraying my system water in the chicken coop and have noticed less smell and fewer flies. I cannot wait for your findings.

I get my resin and cloth from a local marine supply store. Surfboars shaping suppliers will have the same. The cloth comes in 36" and 48" widths. It is best to get the 48" by 3 yards to cover an entire 4x8 sheet of plywood.

Sounds like this book in Sylvia’s store might interest you guys, i just ordered it myself before coming upon this thread. It’s not aquaponic specific but sounds like it could be applied. I also remember a thread she posted about how certain worms release a chemical like the LAB you are talking about, will try to find it.

http://www.theaquaponicstore.com/Adding-Biology-p/ebghf006.htm

 

"

Science is only beginning to understand the microscopic communities of plants and animals providing nutrient cycling, plant protection and plant growth mechanisms. The authors use non-technical language to describe the basic biology and chemistry of nutrient-cycling and plant-growing environments. They also include simple explanations about how to add biology to any plant-growing system and guidelines for conventional, sustainable and organic applications. Whether you're growing indoors in controlled environments and soilless media or outdoors in soil, this book helps you figure out methods for incorporating biology into your programs."

 

Center for Food Safety <office@centerforfoodsafety.org>     

I just received an email from these people telling what they are doing against GMO's.  We are not entirely alone.  We just have to stay at it

woo hoo! that is good news

Care to share the content? I am only now just learning how scary Monsanto has become and how they are trying to eliminate organic seed stock through buying seed companies and contaminating crops with their DNA strains.

Raychel A Watkins said:

Center for Food Safety <office@centerforfoodsafety.org>     

I just received an email from these people telling what they are doing against GMO's.  We are not entirely alone.  We just have to stay at it

Jeffrey Smith <webmaster@responsibletechnology.org> 

Here is another article telling us that Monsanto's great GMO experiments are failing.  The round up resistant plants are being taken over by weeds,  Now the Bt corn has failed in 4 states.  To quote someone on TV " Its not good to try to fool Mother nature.  I think God doesn't like us fooling with His creations.,

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