The Ministry of Agriculture has handed out five Flex Farms hydroponic units that can produce a diverse range of foods efficiently and affordably all year round. According to an MoA press release, the new initiative is part of the Cayman Islands Food and Nutrition Security Policy. Five units have already been given to the Edna Moyle Primary School and Beacon Farms in the minister’s own constituency of North Side, as well as the Clifton Hunter High School and the Department of Agriculture.
The last unit will be sent to Layman Scott High School on Cayman Brac over the next few weeks. The first five Flex Farms were presented to the Cayman Islands as a grant from the Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator, but the ministry is exploring options to acquire additional units, which retail at around US$5,000, for other government entities.
Officials said the partnership with the CCSA is expected to benefit the local farming community and play a pivotal role in the national School Garden Programme at both primary and secondary school levels. The goal is to familiarise students with technologies and sustainable agricultural practices and introduce them to agricultural training for the first time.
According to the ministry, a single Flex Farm can produce 25 pounds of lettuce in just 28 days while occupying just nine square feet of space. After the units are plugged in, and the growing has begun, the DoA will oversee the project, making sure the intended outcomes are met and providing progress updates through social media.
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