Aquaponics is the integration of aquaculture and hydroponics in a reciprocally beneficial water-based system. This arrangement encompasses the growth of a variety of fishes such as goldfish, carp, crappie, tilapia, brim, koi, and bass, as well as plants such as chives and lettuce. The waste from fish litters that turn into nitrates and ammonia are harmful to the fish but are beneficial for plant growth as they help in supplementing essential required nutrients. This creates an extremely maintainable natural system as natural food is available to aquaculture and plants for growth and productivity.
Wide-variety of cultures are using this source of rearing fish and growing crops as a source of food. Rice paddies in China and Thailand are grown with the focus on development based on aquaponic techniques from past few years.
Modern aquaponics is technologically advanced and is an efficient and effective way of producing natural food. Fishes are reared in large tanks, and the plants are nurtured hydroponically. They are implanted in beds with a little gravel or clay, and their roots hang down into the water. The water is cycled through the system so that it collects the residual waste from the fish; then it is pumped to the plant beds, where it is cleaned naturally by the plants and can then be returned to the fish tanks.
Investments in commercial large scale aquaponics projects are increasing widely due to a booming organic food market and growing urban farming. Aquaponics market is relatively fragmented with the presence of few players at country level and lack of regional and global companies. The market for aquaponics is estimated more than the US $ 500 million in 2017 and is projected to exceed the US $ 1.2 billion by 2023.
Aquaponics market can be segmented as by components, by equipment, by end users, by produce, and by regions. By components, aquaponics market is segmented as rearing tanks, settling basin, sump, biofilter, and hydroponics. Furthermore, by equipment, the aquaponics market is segmented as grow lights, water heaters, pumps and valves, and aeration systems. By produce, aquaponics market is segmented into fish, fruits and vegetables, and herb. Aquaponics market is further segmented by region as, Latin America, North America, Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific. In regional segments, North America and Europe possess significant potential whereas Asia-Pacific, and other developing markets such as Latin America and MEA possess growth opportunities for Aquaponics over the forecast period. The technological advancement, growing investment by key stakeholders, and increasing demand for organic products in Europe and North American Region are promoting the growth of Aquaponics Market.
The growth of aquaponics market is mainly due to technological advancement. The key driver of aquaponics market is that it helps in enhancing the ultimate productivity with minimum inputs than traditional agriculture and aquaculture practices. Aquaponics is an advantageous technology as it helps in improving ultimate productivity in cost effective manner. The productivity from aquaponics can be achieved in approximately 10% of the land area and 5% of the water volume required for producing vegetable production. Aquaponics is unified for the highly well-organized use of existing space or distinct applications like intensive urban gardening. Aquaponics helps in accelerating time for crop production. For example, butterhead lettuce varieties can be grown in about 30 days, instead of the typical 60-day growing period needed for conventional production. Production can occur year-round under a greenhouse or in a temperature-controlled enclosure. This allows producers to market fresh produce during seasons when trucked-in produce is at their highest seasonal prices.
The other important factor that drives the aquaponics market is it helps in the diversification of income streams. Aquaponics helps in the production of herbs with the high market, vegetables, and leafy greens, as well as fish, crayfish, worms, mushrooms, and many other crops. These systems allow agriculture to take significant innovative steps toward environmental sustainability. Because these are mostly-closed-loop systems, nutrient effluent leaving the facility is virtually nonexistent. Additionally, fish, plant and other waste solids may be captured and converted into value-added fertilizer products for wholesale or retail sale.
The market also faces restraint that is closely tied to the relatively high price of initial system setup of aquaponics. The high cost of investment for technological system installation is a major hindrance in emerging economies.
Some of the key market player in aquaponics market includes Aquaponic Lynx LLC, Greenlife Aquaponics, Aqua Allotments, Backyard Aquaponics Pty Ltd, The Aquaponic Source, UrbanFarmers AG, ECF Farmsystems GmbH, Nelson and Pade Inc., My Aquaponics, and Ultrasonics Canada Corporation
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