The Search for Meaning; How Colleges Are Failing at Mentoring

Posted by Jason Arnold on Feb 12, 2016 10:46:01 AM

Colleges are failing at mentoring

In a recent post, I outlined some of the reasons why we need to rethink college education. The system is struggling under widely disparate expectations, climbing tuition rates, and an increasingly disillusioned group of adjunct faculty. At the same time, we are facing a skills gap in which the average age of farmers in America is over 55 years old. One of the first steps I'd like to take is to separate the competing ideals of career development and what former Harvard president Derek Bok calls democratic citizenship.

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Topics: Industry

Your First Barnraiser Campaign: The Do’s and Don’ts

Posted by Lauren McClure on Feb 8, 2016 2:26:04 PM

We’ve all heard of crowdfunding. From Kickstarter movie promotions to college students posting their GoFundMe pages on their Facebooks, it’s become pretty ubiquitous in our communities at large.

But what can crowdfunding do for you, a modern farmer?

Barnraiser is more than crowdfunding. It’s a social and funding community that allows its members to further propel the food movement forward by backing projects, celebrating their stories, and connecting to innovators of sustainable food and farming.

Read more: Who is Barnraiser?

Barnraiser’s Content Marketing Associate Ashley Neff, kindly spilled the beans on the do's and don’ts of your first Barnraiser campaign...

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Topics: Business

Parties, Protests, and Pot; It’s Time to Rethink College Education

Posted by Jason Arnold on Feb 5, 2016 2:32:34 PM

Another question you have to answer is "what are kids doing from age 18-22?  You know Peter [Thiel] talked about different models of schools.  One is school as babysitting for that 4 year period.  You know; somewhere to live, somewhere to hang out until you are mature enough that people like employing you.

-Bill Gates

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Topics: Industry

Benefits of True Vertical Farming Include Reduced Labor

Posted by Jason Arnold on Feb 2, 2016 3:42:19 PM

Stacked growing systems use vertical space; but they could be way more efficient.

One technique that is currently being used in the soil-less growing industry is the use of stacked racks containing multiple levels of NFT channels or DWC troughs. This technique allows the producer to take advantage of the vertical space in their production facility, resulting in higher crop densities and the ability to supply more produce to the market.

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Topics: Industry

What Does Community-Based Food Really Look Like?

Posted by Amy Storey on Jan 29, 2016 3:35:03 PM

I'm willing to bet that you've never met a farm like The Growing Experience.

Jimmy Ng is the program manager for The Growing Experience Urban Farm in North Long Beach, California. Today, TGE is a staffed farm complete with community programs and exciting growth and operated by Housing Authority of the County of Los Angeles. But The Growing Experience, like every farm, started with a passion for community-based food systems.
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Topics: Upstart Farmers

An Introduction to Automatic Dosing in Hydroponics

Posted by Jason Arnold on Jan 27, 2016 3:52:30 PM

So you’re thinking about an automated dosing system, but you’re not sure if you can bite the bullet to pay for it. I can sympathize. When someone suggests you may need an expensive new system to run your business, you might be tempted to quietly tip toe away.

Unfortunately, denial is not a good capitalization strategy. The reality is that you may need an automated dosing system to run a commercial hydroponic system. Even so - you can save money (and frustration) down the road by choosing an automatic dosing system that is right for your facility and your needs.

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Topics: Hydroponics

Do You Have to Go to College to Be Successful?

Posted by Jason Arnold on Jan 26, 2016 12:47:52 PM

"The skills gap is a reflection of what we value. To close the gap, we need to change the way the country feels about work." - Mike Rowe

Here at Bright Agrotech, we talk to all sorts of people from all walks of life. We talk to doctors and school teachers; investors and construction workers. What seems to bring us together is a strong love of growing things, and an interest in community-based food systems. We hope that these themes will continue to unify people for years to come.

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Topics: Industry

Why Are So Many Indoor Farmers Crazy About LEDs?

Posted by Amy Storey on Jan 20, 2016 1:27:00 PM

LEDs, LEDs, LEDs. Maybe it's just being part of a vertical farming company that makes me feel like I hear about them all the time, but I also hear pieces on NPR's SciFri and get articles on LEDs delivered to me through Google News discussing LEDs and their rapid evolution.

Altogether, the industry is growing an incredible rate, producing not only more LEDs every year but better quality and lower-priced LEDs every year.

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7 Common Questions About Autodosing in Hydroponics

Posted by Jason Arnold on Jan 19, 2016 2:55:30 PM

Hydroponic production gives growers increased control over the way they cultivate their food or medicinal crops.

With practice, many hydroponic growers can fine-tune their growing environment to remove bottlenecks, minimize maintenance, and increase the quality of their produce. One way they do this is through automated nutrient dosing.

With "autodosing" hydroponic growers have the ability to provide the perfect amount of nutrients to their crops, while minimizing their time spent measuring and monitoring - something all commercial growers will gladly embrace.

But, the learning curve behind autodosing can be a bit overwhelming for the new (and even experienced) hydroponic grower. In fact, one of the most common questions we get here at Bright through our various support services is: “Can you help me figure out my nutrient dosing?”

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Topics: Hydroponic Nutrients

Worried That a Galvanized Tank Might Kill Your Fish?

Posted by Jason Arnold on Jan 18, 2016 4:33:29 PM

Why You Should Avoid Galvanized Steel Tanks in Aquaponic Systems

There are lots of reasons people use galvanized tanks in aquaponics systems. They are cheaper than stainless, they are durable, and they are readily available. Sounds great, right? 

Galvanized steel can cause problems in aquaponic systems, however; if you are thinking about using one for your aquaponic system, it could save you some trouble down the road to know what you are getting into. 

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Topics: Aquaponics

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