ICPFICPF is an art of raising hens, fishes and plants in Hydroponics by Beegle Agritech.
This method helps farmers in becoming economically stable by diversifying their source of income, optimizing water, land and labour, reducing the use of harmful chemical fertilizers and plant protection chemicals and increasing the productivity of the farm that ultimately ensures farmers can earn profit as well as keep the environment sustained.
So, how does it work?
ICPF tries to imitate nature’s principle, where varied types of plants, birds, and fish and other aquatic flora and fauna are integrated for production. These are combined in such a proportion and pattern that each element helps the other; the waste of one is recycled as a resource for the other through LEISA techniques (Low External Input Supply Agriculture).
Hens are placed on top of the pyramid, which leaves its waste straight into the fish tank, which helps in the production of zooplanktons and phytoplankton’s hence feeding fishes. The solid waste of fish and hen gets into the biofilter, where ammonia waste gets converted into nitrates.
This nitrate-rich water now passes in the hydroponics system nourishing plants; in return plants roots purify the water and return the water back into the fish tank which creates a circulatory system.
All these three activities does not happen in three different areas, but, one above the other in the same system in a continuous loop. The only thing that you need to do is just feed the hens. This symbiotic integration ensures that zero bio waste and effective utilization of farm resources.
This method was developed by Beegle Agritech in collaboration with Nottingham Trent University, United Kingdom, and has successfully completed the pilot project in Hesaragatta, Bangalore.
This method demands no-tillage, saves farmers’ investment on tractors and heavy machinery. No major cost for feeding fish and fertilizers for plants, no weeding required and a chance of pest and disease is lesser and thus saves major input costs. It also results in fewer labour requirements and redeems its cost too. Requires less space, hence unlocks increased productivity. So what is all this cost saved? Ultimately, isn’t this saved cost your earned money? Yes, this is where your investments get a cover.
The pilot project at Hesargatta, has a system that occupies 25Sqft area. In normal case, you could grow either 30 plants or 5 Hens or 20 fishes. But with the ICPF method, Beegle Agritech has grown 105 Plants + 5 Hens+ 35 Fishes all three together in the same 25 Sqft of area, thereby increasing the productivity by more than six times with distinct activities, with just 1000 Litres of water.
The income from all three activities not only makes good of the costs but also provides for additional returns for the farmer. The said model has been successfully executed in one of the farmer’s field near Hesargatta, Bangalore.