Glenn Ford

Glenn Ford on Disrupting the Food Industry with Aquaponic Farms

When I first talked to Glenn Ford, he was blaring jazz in his old Chrysler van while rocketing across Pennsylvania on one of the cross country “milk runs”—not an uncommon occurrence for Ford during his yearslong quest to become the largest aquaponic farmer in America. He was a week out from finally getting the bonding—$238 million’s worth—to develop a string of aquaponic farms in seven different areas across the Midwest, which would instantly make him, at the age of 66, one of the biggest players in an industry that’s been the next big thing in carbon-neutral farming for years. Minnesota will host one of these 25-acre sites. Each of them will incorporate high-tech LED lighting and a water circulation system that will produce 38 million pounds of produce and 750,000 pounds of fish annually, all while employing 130 people at sites that run around the clock. Ford says he will gladly consider himself a farmer as soon as the first facility comes on line, even while conceding the title might seem like a stretch coming from somebody who’s never even been much of a gardener.
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