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  • Why start an aquaponics farm?

    We officially opened Balance Farms in the heart of downtown Toledo, adjacent to our flagship store at 215 N. Summit Street in November 2019. The location was strategically placed in the 43604 zip code, a known “food desert” or area where there is no access to a grocery store or fresh produce within walking distance for residents. The farm cultivates fresh crops that are in turn served in our restaurants, and also sold to our friends and community partners in the food and service industries.

    It is what we believe to be the first vertically-integrated farming facility of its kind in the country, and has been instrumental in contributing to the downtown Toledo revitalization efforts. The facility allows us to save water and food miles, avoid agricultural runoff, and prevent food waste during all seasons, 365-days a year, helping us advance our mission as an eco-conscious business.

  • How does aquaponics/hydroponics work?

    Balance Farms utilizes LED lighting and energy-efficient climate control systems to reduce utility usage and allow for non-stop continuous plant growth throughout the year.

    We operate on a closed ecosystem where the fish provide nutrients for the plants, and the plants filter the water for thriving fish. We also grow a cover crop in our systems to reduce exposed water surface area that we then feed back to the fish for nutrients.

    The facility houses eight tanks that raise tilapia and koi fish through various growth stages. The fish waste provides valuable nutrients for essential plant growth. Our fish are also sold live for pond and lake stocking or algae control, but not processed for human consumption.

    Our hydroponics and aquaculture systems are pesticide-free, guaranteeing the most local, freshest produce available.

  • What do you grow at Balance Farms?

    Crops grown at Balance Farms include leafy greens like Kale and Bok Choy, Microgreens, living and harvest herbs, and fruiting veggies like Peppers and Tomatoes.