Farm to Fork

A solution by Plastikourgeio Shop & Lab submitted to Sustainable Food Systems- Access to (qualitative & nutritious) food

We suggest setting a Controlled Hydroponic Greenhouse System and Open Garden, in the Municipal Market of Kyspeli. The system will transform traditionally underutilized space into vibrant urban farms at the roof and basement of the market. A model exceptional in its balance of an aesthetic vision and practical needs, which can address the issue of accessing cheaper but healthier fresh organic food. At the same time the community garden serves as medium for learning experiences, educational programs, youth development and community building opportunities. A recreational urban escape, a meeting point and a spot for hosted conversations & events.

(Pitched: 14/05/2018)

One Page Summary

We suggest setting a Controlled Hydroponic Greenhouse System and Open Garden, in the Municipal Market of Kyspeli. The system will transform traditionally underutilized space into vibrant urban farms at the roof and basement of the market. A model exceptional in its balance of an aesthetic vision and practical needs, which can address the issue of accessing cheaper but healthier fresh organic food. At the same time the community garden serves as medium for learning experiences, educational programs, youth development and community building opportunities. A recreational urban escape, a meeting point and a spot for hosted conversations & events.
By combining technology & agriculture we want to grow healthy food closer to the consumer and hope that less of it will get thrown away, as it will stay fresher for longer and not perish so quickly, while keeping its original flavor and nutrient values. The Municipal Market of Kypseli can become a paradigm in urban regeneration by combining environmental and social benefits, leveraging food security and expanding the Market’s sustainability plan and community programming.
The system will grow different varieties of produce across five major categories: greens, summer vegetables, flowers, herbs and mycos root fungi.
Farm-To-Fork; produce from the farm will be served daily under a community lunch/meal subscription model or sold to community members. A frequently changing contemporary menu of simple, quality and visually delectable dishes, curated by nutritionists, master chefs and cooked by multicultural collective kitchen projects.
Modules of the system:
Vegetable garden
20 sm of modular vertical hydroponic greenhouse system installed on the Market’s roof, will produce a min of 7 kg/day of fresh vegetables, equivalent to 2338 calories. The project involves sophisticated open source technology to control/monitor farm inputs and to create artificial environments within the greenhouse.
Mycos crop module
A 2.5m2. sterilized mycos vertical growing system will be installed in the basement of the market. An ideal crop to grow near the consumer due to its short shelf-life and as it doesn't travel. We expect to achieve a weekly yield of 2 kg/m2. A coffee waste collection system in collaboration with the cafeterias at Fokionos str to support the production.
Community garden
It consists of the workshop/event area and an aromatic mediterranean garden. The garden will come to life and benefit out of the closed cycle waste management system of the greenhouse; interconnected systems both in scope and functionality.
Sowing
Automated control environment tray modules will be installed for seedlings, which will stay protected in their early life stages and can be planted out when conditions are more pleasant.
Waste Management System
Includes the water treatment and circulation, as well as denitrification units using a shallow horizontal sub-surface flow system.
Composting
Recycle plant material into food for the plants
Composting plays an important role in our hydroponic system, it increases yields while reducing waste..
Dehydration
Dehydrators are perfect for drying fruits, vegetables, seeds, herbs. They preserve the organic matter and prevent “case hardening” on the outside; keeping the food properties and increasing its flavor.
Many examples around the world highlight the intrinsic value of UA as a tool to access affordable healthy food within the most deprived and densely populated areas of a city, Spitalfields City Farm in London or Frisch vom Dach (Fresh from the Roof) are some of the examples found in Europe.
Acceptable load limits on the Municipal Market of Kypseli roof could result in a limitation for production outcome. However the use of high yield systems, optimizes the final space available. Airborne pollutants in the city may concern end-customers despite the recent researches suggesting levels under the EU-food safety norm concentration limits that can be easily rinsed off. Furthermore the proposed system of controlled rooftop productions within hydroponic greenhouses is potentially less subject to air and rain pollution issues.
The participation of the Municipality of Athens in the URBACT project, with intentions to achieve partnerships with local businesses, social enterprises and civil society groups will benefit the network development of the project. The potential of a green market in Kypseli is a great opportunity for the city of Athens to transform both urban spaces and mindsets and to contribute to making our city more sustainable and liveable.
High degree of know-how in plant science and engineering skills are required for successful implementation and operation of the system. The collaborative work between LUDD engineering skills and Plastikourgeio experience in crop production makes practicable the development and implementations for the custom greenhouse design, setting of the controlled vertical hydroponic system and business operation.