Mr. Jack Probart, founder of Eden Aquaponics, also a director of Makarios Communities, started a project in the George area late 2012. Makarios Communities partnered with Eden Aquaponics in bringing a Corporate solution to the growing crisis in the food supply.
The United Nations food program recently reported that “Global agriculture production needs to increase by 70 percent to meet food demand by the middle of the century as more people move to cities”. Growers will have to increase yields on existing farms as the amount of land available for agriculture is shrinking. About 70 percent of people will live in urban areas by 2050, up from 50 percent today. This demand for agricultural food products will place significant pressure on land, which is where aquaponics plays such a significant role. Furthermore, with climate change (carbon emission), food shortages, water shortages, depleting fish stocks and increasing energy costs becoming critical problems and issues facing the world, one can see that aquaponic systems are an obvious solution to reducing their impacts. Aquaponics is a revolution in food production and food freedom comparable to what the world has seen with personal computing. Eden Aquaponics wants to give the under-privileged the tools with which to start this peaceful, affirmative revolution. The South African government has also now realised that aquaculture needs to be developed in South Africa and various initiatives should soon be investigated.
Eden Aquaponics (Pty) Ltd is the brainchild of Jack Probart, who has the vision of developing a commercial business, with a community focus, and with the realisation that food security is fast-becoming just as vital as a healthy economic environment. His vision combines aquaculture and hydroponics to produce fish and vegetables in the Eden area of the Garden Route, in order to supply fish, for consumption, and to supply fingerlings for farming, as well as grow a variety of organically-grown vegetables for distribution to the local farmers’ markets, hospitality industry, the consumer and retailers.
Through its partnership with Makarios Communities (Pty) Ltd, a public-benefit company, the company will focus on providing opportunities in the hydroponic and aquaponic fields of agriculture, specifically to the under-privileged sector of the community.
The business is owned by the Probart family with interests in wealth management and property investment business and is managed by Jack Probart. A small team of 9 oversees the day-to-day running of the business.
The vision of Eden Aquaponics is to become a major player in the aquaponic farming environment and be the main supplier of aquaponic equipment and ancillary resources in South Africa, as well as to develop a community of aquaponic farmers in order to feed the nation. Eden Aquaponics also aspires to be productive, helpful and profitable, aspiring to become leaders in aquaponic technology and farming techniques.
The company owns a farm in the George area where the first commercial aquaponics operation has been set up with phase 1 comprising two greenhouses measuring 925 m2 with vegetables and between 600 kg to 1000 kg of fish (Tilapia).
Eden Aquaponics will provide food and “give life” by combining aquaculture and hydroponics, by teaching willing people an energy-efficient way of achieving “food- freedom” within an integrated eco-system.