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The Future of Food? Aquaculture & Aquaponics

We learn about new ways of growing our food. There's aquaculture; growing fish and crops in coastal waters and the open ocean.  At the mouth of the Piscataqua River, a UNH-led team has designed a raft that serves as a pen for steelhead trout, with mussels and sea kelp that benefit from the fish.  Then there's aquaponics - using the wastewater from farming fish to provide nutrients for plants grown without soil. And then, we hear Peter Biello's interview with Joshua Johnson of 1A when he visited New Hampshire last month. 


  • Michael Chambers - Research Scientist, UNH Cooperative Extension and New Hampshire Sea Grant.
  • Todd Guerdat - UNH Assistant Professor of Agricultural Engineering.

We also hear from Chef Jeremy Sewall who uses the farmed steelhead trout in his Row 34 restaurants in Portsmouth and Boston.

Our earlier conversation about uses for seaweed and cooking with it, here.

Rainbow trout are hatched and raised at a local hatchery in Ossipee where they swim in long raceways with flowing freshwater. At eight months of age or 10" in length, they can be transferred to growout cages in the ocean. Trout have the remarkable ability to acclimate from freshwater to seawater and can tolerate a wide variety of temperatures. Once in seawater, they are referred to as steelhead trout. In warm coastal waters, steelheads can grow to five pounds in seven months. Learn more hereand watch this video:

Researchers are using nutrients to grow plants that come from fish in a recirculating aquaponic system. The project recently grew Boston butter head lettuce in 35 days from seed to harvest using only nutrients from the fish. They are also using the system to grow strawberries. Fish used in the system include tilapia, brown trout, and rainbow trout. The research is a part of the New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station at UNH:

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