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AVF Newsletter #7 - July 2015 

Hello <<First Name>>,
The wondrous world of Vertical Farming is being shaped by you and by all the other people that passionately keep on believing in it's magnificent possibilities. We would love to show you everything, yet, there's so much happening worldwide that we are obliged to make choices.
In this month's newsletter you'll find:

Beetroot or Beta vulgaris - Every part of this plant is utterly delicious

Great news from India

The Association for Vertical Farming is now an official legal entity in India. All thanks to Mohan Bajikar, the AVF regional manager for India.

Mohan Bajikar at the AVF-summit in Bejing (May 2015)

MOHAN has quite an impressive resume so there is no keeping his bio short. He started as a Graduate in Agriculture and over time, supplemented that with specialized training worldwide: Environment Management at IMD Geneva, Land Reforms in Taiwan, Food Safety & Grain Storage in USA & Canada, Biochemicals from Southampton University UK and Bio Control from CIBC UK.

During his extensive career he has addressed many chambers of Commerce and agriculture universities in India and Europe. Mohan has thrice been on a Trade Mission led by Prince of Belgium in India. He also was a member of the Biotechnology Task force & Prime ministers Mode program for two years.

At the moment Mohan Bajikar represents several leading Agriculture, Biotechnolgy and Renewable Energy companies from the USA & Europe. He is also a member of European Business Group and the India, Belgium & Luxembourg business association. Next to that, Mohan is a Life Member of  the Maharashtra Economic Development Council.  

And now, we are proud to welcome Mohan in our team as the Regional Manager of AVF in India.

Reach out to Mohan trough

Watch Mohan Bajikar in action at the AVF-summit in Bejing - 0:33 

The Element14 Design Challenge

Element14, the world’s largest online community for design engineers and technology enthusiasts, has selected the 15 finalists who will take part in their new Vertical Farming Design Challenge. These individuals will build indoor vertical gardens using IoT technologies and methods that have the potential to change how food is produced around the world.

The 15 participants in the Vertical Farming Design Challenge, and their home countries, are:

  1. Ognyan Chikov, Bulgaria
  2. Keith Earns, United States
  3. John Henderson, United States
  4. Calla Klafas, Australia
  5. Erik Lau, United States
  6. José Marques, Portugal
  7. James O’Donnell, United States
  8. Kowshik E Patel, India
  9. Michael Ratcliffe, United Kingdom
  10. Rick Reynolds, United States
  11. Clem Martins, United States
  12. Ajit Singh, India
  13. Shane Sissons, United Kingdom
  14. Joshua Tsai, United States
  15. Srinivasan Kanni Udaiyar, India

Competitors have until November 2 to create their indoor vertical farms. element14 will provide each participant with a kit of IoT-enabled technologies from Silicon Labs and Wurth Elektronik to help with the designs. Green Spirit FarmsFarmedHere and the Association for Vertical Farming will guide challengers through the growing and harvesting process.

Along with the resulting crops, entries will be judged on originality, innovation, technical merit and data points collected. The winners will be announced on November 17.

For more info, Click here.

Changemaker in the Spotlights


The Association For Vertical Farming would not exist if it weren't for the people who supported it. Therefore we would like to get to know our members and what better way to do that than through a small interview - thanks to the internet, we can now do this in person.

This week we interviewed Daniel Kuenzi from Local Roots, Los Angeles, United States. Watch and Enjoy the first live changemaker in the spotlights interview.

Changemaker in the Spotlights

Our newest members

The AVF-alliance is growing, this month many individuals and 3 organizations joined forces in fostering the sustainable growth and the development of the Vertical Farming industry. Reach out to them and welcome them to our thriving international family.

Sonneteck Technology Corporation is an international team of specialist in artificial lighting systems, including - of course - lighting for indoor agriculture. Their latest project is a plant factory in association with the Chinese company KINGPENG.
  EPRI is an international  research institute that aims to advancing safe, reliable, affordable and environmentally responsible electricity for society through global collaboration, thought leadership, science & technology innovation.

As Electricity is one of the main challenges for Indoor & Vertical Farming, EPRI is an important partner. Let's shape the future of electricity together. 

The Grodan Group is a global market leader in the supply of stonewool substrate solution for professional growers. Founded in the Netherlands in 1979, Grodan has been steadily expanding and is now active in over 60 countries (from America to Asia). Innovation and sustainability is also very important to them, they were the first substrate supplier to obtain ISO 9001/14001 certification, the Kiwa Keur (quality certificate) and the European Eco-label.

Click Here for GRODAN's press release for joining the AVF. We are very honoured by their kind words.
Grodan explains the basics about growing in Rockwool

Ask Grodan

For the August Changemaker in the spotlights interview, we are meeting with Stuart Lambie, GRODAN's sustainability manager. GRODAN supplies innovative and sustainable stone wool substrate solutions for the professional horticultural sector.

If there are any question you would like Henry and Zjef to ask Stuart, CLICK HERE and post it in this LinkedIn-post.

Opportunities in the wonderous world of Vertical Farming

Looking to make your mark in the sustainability industry? Excited by the emerging field of vertical farming? Check out the AVF Careers Portal on which our members post exciting new opportunities.

  • Developer: Full-time job with Agrilution (Munich, Germany) 
  • Team Lead: Full-time job with Local Roots Farms (Los Angeles, USA)
  • Team Associate: Full-time job with Local Roots Farms (Los Angeles, USA)
  • Plant Scientist: Full-time job with Local Roots Farms (Los Angeles, USA)
  • General Manager: Full time job with Local Roots Farms (Los Angeles, USA)
  • Summer internship with Agritecture (New York City)
  • Designer: Volunteer with the Association for Vertical Farming

There is no better time to join AVF!

  • Connect with like-minded people and start or support new VF initiatives
  • Get exposure for you and your organization
  • Find career or internship opportunities
  • Improve and share research and development
  • Strengthen political influence and encourage the implementation of VF worldwide
  • Take part in VF events and conferences
  • Learn more about VF and stay up to date with the rapidly evolving industry
Reach New Heights! Join the AVF

The AVF Agenda

November TBD, 2015
Agritecture Design Workshop
 London, United Kingdom

June 14-16, 2016
GreenTech Amsterdam 2016, Vertical Farming Pavilion
 Amsterdam, Netherlands

June 17-18, 2016
AVF Summit 2016 Amsterdam, Netherlands
 Amsterdam, Netherlands

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