We are on a mission to help people find their inner awesomeness and encourage them to make what matters.
We believe that aeroponics matters and can change the world.
When you think of the future do you think of new kinds of technology? Do you see holograms and screens or spaceships and high-tech buildings? One thing that doesn’t come to mind for most people is plants, food, and agriculture. We want to change that.
In 2005, a researcher in Iowa found that the milk, sugar, and strawberries that go into a carton of strawberry yogurt traveled an incredible 2,211 miles just to get to the processing plant. The number of miles the yogurt traveled is called “food miles”. Food miles have gone up significantly in the last decade. In 1997 it averaged 980 miles. In 2004 it was 1,230 miles. That’s a 25% increase in just seven years. This doesn’t even include the last few miles to your house, which are the least efficient of the whole journey.
We cultivate our crops in fields where we assume it is efficient. However, we consume the food in our homes, far away from the fields. All this transportation makes the price of the food go up and pollutes the atmosphere. Freshly picked vegetables that have been in the back of a truck for many miles aren’t fresh anymore. This affects nutritional quality and taste.
Water is a scarce resource. One out of six people don’t have access to safe drinking water. You may think that water is only scarce in third world countries, but, it’s a problem here in California too. Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, Michigan, Oklahoma, Ohio, and Indiana have also all had recent issues delivering enough water. As consumers, we install low-flow shower heads and water conserving dishwashers to address this problem, but California agriculture production is the largest water consumer in the state at 79% of the total surface and pumped ground water usage. Almost eight out of every ten gallons of water is used in farming. We need to grow enough food for everyone, but the current method costs the environment dearly.
This is where aeroponics comes in. Aeroponics is a form of soil free gardening where the roots of plants hang in a root chamber filled with fog. The fog has nutrients in it that help the plants grow. It was invented by NASA as a way to grow food in space, but I think it has promise here on earth too. This type of gardening uses 98% less water than traditional soil agriculture and can produce 13 crop turns a year, more than double traditional farming. With such fast plant growth and only using 2% of the water normally needed, we believe aeroponics can be the sustainable future of gardening.
This experience has turned all of us into hyperlocavores, someone who eats locally grown food. For some meals, our food miles is zero! Instead of eating fast food, we grab a cucumbers from our backyards. In our future world, the spaceships will grow aeroponic food and the high-tech buildings will have hydroponic rooftop gardens.
We want to encourage everyone out there to experiment with growing your own plants. We’ve inherited a used planet. It’s up to us to make the best of it. If you play with arduinos, hook them up to an aeroponic system, like we have. If you like to cook then use the freshest and tastiest ingredients from your own backyard! If you’re a maker, Make What Matters!
We believe that if we all do our part we can change the world, one garden at a time. We are doing our part by spreading aeroponics. Whether it is building an aeroponic garden or making a new solar panel design, if you make what matters, you are doing your part to change the world!