by Andrew Ong
Natural V Farm is an Aquaponics farm located on a piece of land at the back of the YMCA, Ipoh.
The term Aquaponics derives from two words, Aqua meaning water and Ponics meaning work with water. Aquaponics therefore means the breeding of Fish, in an enclosed tank, and the growing of plants in a soil-less environment.
This process does not rely on manufactured fertilisers or pesticides as the fish and plants depend on each other to thrive. The waste from the fish is filtered through a filtration system to provide nutrients to the plants and the plants in turn purify the water for the fish to survive. The water in this system is recycled and there is little wastage of water. This means that the fish and vegetation is free of artificial fertilisers and safe for consumption.
With the sharp drop in the supply and ever increasing cost of foodstuff, Natural V Farm is embarking on a project to encourage urban dwellers in Aquaponics. This method of farming does not take up a lot of space, is cost effective and inexpensive to maintain. Since it does not take up a lot of space it can be turned into a hobby, one can easily set up a small unit in your own backyard.
Natural V Farm is currently running with a 10 feet x 12 feet Fish Tank and a 8 feet x 12 feet Vertical Farm consisting of 25 towers. Both these contraptions are interconnected with a series of pipes and a modern filtration system.
They are rearing about 100 Red Tilapia Fish and growing a few types of vegetables such as Dwarf Pak Choy, Mint Leaves, Green Stem Choy Sum, Kai Lan (Chinese Kale) and Lettuce Looseleaf (Salad Leaves).
The vegetables are first grown along the growth beds which sit on top of the water table and replanted onto the towers after about two weeks. Water is pumped into the towers from the fish tank and slowly released into the towers through a series of valves at the top of the towers to replenish the vegetables. The water is then pumped back into the filtration system and the recycling process is completed.
They have just started operations in June 2022 and the first harvest of vegetables in early August was a success. The fish are however still too small to be harvested. They are growing well and more will be added soon to increase its numbers.
Before one proceeds to start this project it is advisable to consider what type of fish to breed and what vegetables to grow in terms of availability, market demand, good growth rate and yield.
This enterprise has decided on the above options but it is up to the individual to decide on what they need to produce.
Natural V Farm invites all to visit the farm and they will be on hand to take you on a tour of their facility.
For more details contact : Max Chin, 6013-8307928