January 6, 2015

Growing Berries Year-Round in Connecticut?

That is the hope among some Connecticut farmers. For most of the year, strawberries are shipped to Connecticut from California, Florida, Mexico, and South America. But what if berries could be grown in-state year-round?

According to Fox Business, Agrivolution LLC, a New Haven company, has received a $73,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to assess the feasibility of year-round, indoor farming in Connecticut. The money will be used to research if hydroponics can work here. (Hydroponics is a method of growing plants in water without soil.) In addition to potentially expanding farming operations, there may be economic development opportunities for state manufacturers to produce indoor farming equipment. But a possible snag in the growth of indoor farming is the high cost of energy in the state. So the grant recipient also will be working with fuel cell companies to try to reduce energy costs.