Aquaponic Gardening

A Community and Forum For Aquaponic Gardeners

A few weeks ago I was approached by Milwaukee architect, Phillip Katz for feedback about a new mobile fresh produce cart he has developed called the Roadside Culture Stand.  I wrote about it in my blog last week in a post called Aquaponics and the Evolution of Fresh, but I also told him that I would post it in here and see what you all thought...as long as he joined our site so he could answer questions and interact with us.  I've included a link to Phillip's page in his name above.

Below is a link to a more extensive set of drawings of the cart.  What do you all think?

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Well definitely a nice design of a mobile roadside produce stand.

 

Would need some modifications to have it running live aquaponics culture onboard (how to keep fish from being sloshed too much in transit and enough batteries and water for a long term stay would be really heavy for most vehicles to tow.)  Less modifications to manage Green Acres temporary market bins sort of method and might work well as a display platform for the Zipgrow towers.  Nice thing being that the solar could power the water or air pumps for either of their methods.

Hello. I am owner and founder of Phillip Katz Project Development (PKPD) a design and management practice in Milwaukee, the global epicenter of urban agriculture. We recently won a competition for our design of a 'Roadside Culture Stand'.

PKPD is in the process of fabricating several of the roadside culture stands for use by farmers and urban agriculturalists locally. We are offering the stand for sale to anyone who might be interested across the country.

The stand makes it possible for farmers and urban agricultural practitioners to bring their produce or wares to wherever their consumers may be.

We welcome any and all comments and feedback related to the roads culture stand. Please feel free to contact us if you or someone you know of may be interested in procuring or hosting a roadside culture stand in your community.

I think it's cute as heck, but how practical?  Seems a little small for true retailing.  Perhaps if there were additional foldup display area.  Folding tables or something similar, and a popup 10x10 canopy tent on board for shelter from the elements.  Would definitely raise awareness, though.  I like the PV's on the roof.  You could put a small demo aquaponics system in play, say a 30 gallon acrylic tank. Haul the water in a larger 55 gallon drum in your pickup bed, a dozen or so 2-3" fish in a couple of 5 gallon buckets with aeration and a lid.  Once on site, fill your display tank from the one in the truck, add fish, turn on solar powered pumps and lighting.  Could be set up in an hour or so, I think.

 

Neat idea. Like TCLynx said....It would be easy to have it set up for a display of lettuces.

Green Acres had issues with using real fish in the display aquaponics units.  Weekly moving fish from tank to tank tends to really stress them out and they don't survive so well.

 

It would be best if a display unit could be managed so that the fish could live in it full time without as much disturbance.

I'm in Louisville, KY, the global center of the world of logistics, according to UPS.....;-)

 

I have access to a complete heavy manufacturing fabrication facility, and would  be interested in doing some of the fabrication work to build these if anyone is interested.  I envision an even larger version based on a 5th wheel type trailer being in play.  I've also seen a 50 ft over the road trailer converted to mobile hydroponics.  Only a few steps from aquaponics.

Great suggestions, thanks. The unit was not designed for aquaponics demonstration, but we have a variation in R&D that would have a small urban ag and aquaponics demonstration and education unit similar to what we saw at farm aid last year.

The retail display is sufficient for most farmers for use at daily markets, etc. The custom display racks are modular and can be configured in a number of ways in order to accommodate whatever products are being displayed.

We have construction documents that reveal more of the details than what are seen in the renderings that have been posted here. There are a multitude of display options that involve racking, hanging, and tiered shelving.

Cost, practicality, design, and ease of fabrication guided this design. We wanted something practical and affordable that could be deployed immediately.
I am interested in learning more about the potential for fabrication in your facility. I'd like to connect to discuss the possibility. I am getting a lot of inquiries and I am questioning the sustainability of fabricating in a place that is not a global epicenter of logistics ;)


Don Justice said:

I'm in Louisville, KY, the global center of the world of logistics, according to UPS.....;-)

 

I have access to a complete heavy manufacturing fabrication facility, and would  be interested in doing some of the fabrication work to build these if anyone is interested.  I envision an even larger version based on a 5th wheel type trailer being in play.  I've also seen a 50 ft over the road trailer converted to mobile hydroponics.  Only a few steps from aquaponics.

Be glad to discuss.  We have a world class facility with a barge dock on the Ohio River, and a rail siding to boot.  We've manufactured for the energy industry as well as for companies like GE.  My direct email is don.justice@gmail.com

 

On another note, we're in the process of converting a 150 year old distillery building into an advanced solar powered aquaponics test bed.

Phillip Katz said:



Don Justice said:

I'm in Louisville, KY, the global center of the world of logistics, according to UPS.....;-)

 

I have access to a complete heavy manufacturing fabrication facility, and would  be interested in doing some of the fabrication work to build these if anyone is interested.  I envision an even larger version based on a 5th wheel type trailer being in play.  I've also seen a 50 ft over the road trailer converted to mobile hydroponics.  Only a few steps from aquaponics.

I have no experience with mobile AP systems, but had a display unit in a nursery for over a year and this worked fairly well in the end.  I have always thought that it would be great to be able to maintain AP produce in a container full of water in a shop, allowing a customer to get it as fresh as possible.  This puts some logistics pressure on the farmer, which in part could be adressed with this type of unit.  I share everyone's concern about having live fish in such a system, but what about a reservoir of AP water and bins for the plants on sale? The process can be explained to the customer, but in the end, the idea is to keep the produce fresh and in this way, the farmer can also return live, unsold produce back into his AP system when he/she returns from the market.  The mobile unit will therefore become the shop front I imagined, and with a small reservoir and circulation pump, a small amount of PV will be able to keep it going wherever you put it. 
I had a chef approach me about a similar idea but he wants to modify a roach coach lunch wagon into a mobile farmers market. He wants to stock it with live aquaponic produce. Anything that does not sell can go back into the system at the end of the day.

I used to take fish with me to farmers markets with my mobile display but soon gave up. Tilapia do not like to go on road trips. Using system water was fine for keeping plants happy in the display system. Goldfish would de a geed alternative if you really wanted to have fish for display.

 

 

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