The world of microgreens farming has been such a fun experience to learn about and to explore!
Learning about and growing microgreens has opened up whole avenues for self sustainability and food security that may have gone unnoticed before to so many communities worldwide!
In the beginning of the pandemic, many people had no choice but to face the giant realization of how heavily they relied upon unreliable sources like grocery stores to supply all of their most basic needs. Some were motivated to change this and to learn new ways to create food security and self sustainability in their communities. Without the grocery store, how many of us would honestly survive? Should we be relying only on outside sources to sustain us and to provide food security?
We saw firsthand what happens when people go into panic mode and buy all of the toilet paper and flour available, leaving shelves bare for others who ended up going without. We have had the opportunity to recognize our need for creating food security in our own communities and why that is so vital, especially with the state of our modern day economy being so unpredictable.
Microgreens and the farming practices used to grow this nutrient dense seedling allows nourishing food to be grown in an extremely small area of space, and in a short amount of time.
A lot of people who were concerned about food security discovered the value of microgreens during the pandemic and saw how much of a difference a small microgreens farm could make in their community when fresh, raw food was most vital.
Urban farming techniques encompass various methods tailored to cultivate crops in urban settings with limited space. Some popular techniques include:
- Vertical Farming: Growing plants in vertically stacked layers, often using hydroponic or aeroponic systems, to maximize space.
(Vertical Farming is the farming technique used by Dani Greens and has the ability to produce large amounts of nutrient dense food in a small amount of time and space.)
- Container Gardening: Growing plants in containers or pots, making it feasible for people with limited space, such as balconies or rooftops.
- Hydroponics and Aquaponics: Soilless methods that use water-based solutions to deliver nutrients to plants directly (hydroponics) or in conjunction with fish (aquaponics), allowing for efficient resource use and space-saving.
- Community Gardens: Shared spaces where individuals collectively cultivate crops, fostering a sense of community, sharing knowledge, and providing fresh produce to participants.
- Green Roofs and Walls: Utilizing rooftops or vertical surfaces to grow plants, enhancing building insulation, reducing urban heat, and improving air quality.
These techniques promote local food production, increase access to fresh produce, and encourage sustainable practices in urban environments, where in times of food insecurity, may be needed the most.
Food security and self sustainability are so important for us and have the ability to grow our local communities in powerful ways.
Food security and self sustainability puts the power into our hands, to provide for ourselves when the grocery store and corporations can't. Food is one of our most basic necessities.
Microgreens can sustain whole communities all by themselves if it were necessary since they are so nutrient dense, which is the most important factor when thinking about creating food security and self sustainability.
When we don't have to rely on big chain grocery stores to supply all of our food sources, and are instead of pouring into large corporations, are pouring our resources into our own communities, we are strengthening our immediate communities and their people.
Urban farming often includes microgreens as they're well-suited for cultivation in limited spaces. Microgreens are young vegetable greens harvested at an early stage, making them perfect for urban farming due to their quick growth cycle and small footprint. They can be grown indoors or in small outdoor spaces like balconies, windowsills, or vertical gardens.
Dani Greens uses LED lights to grow our Greens, which are super energy efficient, using less energy than a few regular light bulbs. The amount of water needed to sustain a microgreens farm is also miniscule compared to watering a conventional farm or to grow a full sized vegetable.
The rapid growth of microgreens, typically within 7-14 days, allows for continuous production, providing a steady supply of fresh and nutritious greens. Because microgreens require minimal resources like water and space compared to full-grown crops, they are ideal for urban farming initiatives aiming for sustainability and self-sufficiency. They contribute to local food security, offer high nutritional value, and can create jobs for small urban communities.
Food security is crucial for individuals, communities, and nations for several reasons:
- Nutrition and Health: Access to an adequate, varied, and nutritious diet is essential for maintaining good health. Food insecurity can lead to malnutrition and various health issues, particularly in vulnerable populations such as children and the elderly.
- Economic Stability: Food security contributes to economic stability by ensuring consistent access to food at affordable prices. It reduces the risks of market fluctuations affecting food availability and prices, which can strain household budgets and national economies.
- Social Stability: Adequate food availability promotes social stability by reducing conflicts arising from food shortages or disparities in access. It fosters a more equitable society where basic needs are met, reducing social tensions.
- Sustainable Development: Ensuring food security involves sustainable agricultural practices that safeguard natural resources like soil, water, and biodiversity. This contributes to environmental sustainability and long-term food production.
- Resilience to Shocks: Food security builds resilience against various shocks, including natural disasters, economic downturns, or global crises, enabling communities to better withstand and recover from adverse events.
Overall, food security is essential not just for individuals' well-being but also for the stability, development, and resilience of communities and nations.
With our current economy, food prices have skyrocketed to the point where the common middle class family has struggled to keep food on their tables. Because, we have no choice but to pay the high prices demanded by grocery stores as a result of inflated prices.
While inflation has also impacted small microgreens farms to some degree, that degree isn't nearly as high compared to grocery store food prices that have risen substantially over the last recent years.
What happens amidst emergencies? When food is scarce or prices are just too high? When people have relied solely upon the grocery store to supply all of their food? Or when people have failed to create sustainable sources of food to feed them, and the grocery stores are not able to sustain them?
We shouldn't fail to recognize the importance of small microgreens farms like Dani Greens, and the valuable role they can play in their local communities' lives. Small urban farms like Dani Greens are a great cause to support, because they create food security and self sustainability in a time when it's most important to ensure that we have available to us. We should keep them around indefinitely and be sure that they can thrive to only help their community thrive.
Many people have come to realize that living on boxed, preserved, "foods" has only contributed to health issues. Sadly, most modern day people are vitamin and mineral deficient because of the foods they consume.
Nutritionally deficient diets are a gigantic cause of health issues today especially in America because we've been raised on boxed foods, preservatives and artificial sources of nutrition instead of making whole, raw foods our main sources of nutrition.
We try to make up for our nutritional deficiencies using supplements, but even that many times does not solve the real root cause of vitamin and mineral deficiencies that can lead to malnutrition, health issues and even mental health issues that so many people are facing today as a result of nutritional deficiencies.
Dani Greens hopes to be a vital part of our local communities lives, that we can be a source of nutrient dense food security and self sustainability, may times of need arise again. Small urban microgreens farms like Dani Greens can produce absurdly large amounts of fresh, raw, whole, nutrient dense foods to support our communities, and that should not be overlooked or seen as a luxury.
Food is a necessity for us. Real food. Food that will nourish us. Food that will strengthen us. Food that can be replenished with sustainable practices and little resources when they might become more scarce.
Dani Greens has so much to offer, and I hope that my local communities will come to recognize just how much that is worth.
We don't have to fall victim to a lack of food security when we will support self sustainability and food secure industries locally, right in our own backyard.
Especially at this time of year, many of us end up supporting larger corporations and look outside of our own communities for gifts that we will give to our loved ones and our small, local businesses end up taking the brunt of it as a result.
Dani Greens is experiencing how that impacts small local businesses now. While Dani Greens is still a very new farm and a new business in general, my sales have fallen greatly, so I'm taking the time to ask why that might be.
One thought is that this is due to the holiday season and that people might not see microgreens as a necessity in their lives, but instead, a luxury. Or that they might be trying to save money in ways by cutting out things they don't think they need. Which is understandable completely, but I hope to help bring awareness to this by possibly helping to shift our understanding a little.
Dani Greens hopes that we won't be viewed by the people in our local communities as a luxury or just as a high end garnish, but as a source of food security and nourishment to our local communities that will help them to thrive.
It can be difficult to challenge our thinking about these concepts because of our American way of thinking, but we may learn some important things from countries who don't have the luxuries that we do and what they focus on to strengthen their communities. One of the first is always food security and self sustainability.
This holiday season, give yourself and your family the gift of life= nutrient dense food, health and strength, and helping to support food security and the self sustainability of our local communities by supporting small local farms and businesses like Dani Greens. When our bodies are strong, our minds are strong, and our communities are stronger together.
Dani Greens hopes to rally our local communities' support for the cause of building them up, supporting them, making connections, building relationships, and feeding and nourishing them by providing one of their most basic needs.
But I can't do this on my own because it's not just for my own cause. I need your support, and I hope that you'll see the value in doing that.
I am so thankful for the people who have seen the value of Dani Greens and what it has to offer all of us together as a community. Your support means so much to me and my little family, but it also has the ability to be something especially valuable if a time of need arises again in the future like we have recently seen happen during the pandemic.
I hope to experience many future years of microgreens farming, to continue growing and meeting the needs of the Yuba-Sutter area in ways that can be vital for all of us together.
All my love and gratitude,