MicroFarm

Fabian Strunden (GE)

MicroFarm is a prototype for an automated, wall-mounted living space aeroponic (the process of growing plants in an air or mist environment without the use of soil) system that grows edible plants at high speed. MicroFarm sets out to challenge the relationship between food production and consumers in today’s complex food chain, and to enable urban dwellers to become producers of nutritious and delicious plants.

MicroFarm concentrates on growing ‘microgreens’ — the shoots of vegetables such as rocket, celery, beetroot or pak choi — that are picked just after the first leaves have developed. Microgreens contain remarkably higher levels of vitamins and nutrients than their mature plant counterparts. For example, according to research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, red cabbage microgreens had forty times more vitamin E and six times more vitamin C than mature red cabbage. MicroFarm offers a system for more deliberate nutritious eating habits in the home environment.

In addition to the Internet of Things enabled physical unit, it provides an online platform that enables growers to filter and purchase seeds, engage with other microgrowers and control their MicroFarm from their phone. What if our appliances helped us easily create our food? MicroFarm can be seen as a slick and user-friendly domestic appliance for growing systems, an automated device that hides the mechanics. Can you imagine a MicroFarm alongside your coffee machine and toaster?

PROFILE

From an early age, Fabian Strunden has designed and scripted engaging websites with a strong focus on clear design aesthetic and user experiences. This sparked his passion for experimenting with circuitry that make his designed objects smarter by connecting them to online services and web based communities. Fabian uses technology to reduce redundant tasks, allowing him to focus on the beautiful aspects of life.

Grow House collects a number of projects which propose to bring agriculture out of the fields at the periphery of town and into the centre of our houses, cities and factories.