From Milwaukee Renaissance

EarthRenaissance: IrvingSteel

Video Clip of Global Student Leader Summit in Shanghai

Introducing Irving Steel October 2013

Irving has spent 5 years in China. He speaks French, Chinese, and English with a deep understanding of Chinese culture and has extensive relations throughout business, academic, and government. He has been a crucial element of the nascent social entrepreneurship industry in China from attending and speaking at conferences, delivering innovation classes to global programs, teaching on international certifications such as ISO26000, and investing, starting, and exiting a social enterprise. He is passionate about triple bottom line and cross-border innovation. He was listed at University of Georgia’s 40 under 40 and has been featured in leading publications from Kiplinger, China Daily, Shanghai Daily, Liberation Daily, Bloomberg Business Week, Shanghai Technology Daily, and more. He has won numerous awards including China Angel Investment Forum, RFP Asia, and Rotary Shanghai. Irving is an avid reader on a range of topics with a special interest in psychology.

In 50 years I will still be able to get out in the woods and go for runs or hikes. There will be plentiful woods and lots of people will have the time, energy and interest to explore them. People will no longer be strapped to the endless 9–5 job and worrying about the next bill that they have to pay and rushing from one place to another. I will be still pushing as hard as possible to have as many people learn the magical powers of aquaponics. People from far-reaching places around the world speaking many different languages will come together and have talks on it. I will be able to look out and see the next generations of our family, of our community, who are taking what we started so many years ago to next levels.

At this point it is likely we are exploring different galaxies and planets. There will be times where they will need to use our food systems in order for us to better understand everything that is out there. I’ll be on the aquaponics diet. I’ll be eating everything that I grew myself. I will feel great.

In 25 years, I will be reading, writing, and growing my food. I will be learning another language at this time and trying to better understand our history. I will have a growing family who is loving the meals we all cook together. People will be living a life with clean food. People will be eating what they can trust and is good for their health.

In 10 years I will be doing what I love: spreading the love of aquaponics and its magic. We will at this point be on every continent and have people innovating beyond belief. There will be so many iterations of our systems that people will ask, “how did we ever live before eating like this?”

In 5 years we will be traveling, speaking, and teaching people about aquaponics. By this time Connecticut will be called the ‘next Silicon Valley’ there will be an enormous amount of other creative people coming up with different solutions to market problems. We will be having more and more interaction with the great universities in the area, UCONN, Yale, Conn College, and more. We will redefine what education is and have education be hands on learning.

In 2 years we will be the force to be reckon with. We will be developing systems for people to grow their food all over. People will be amazed at how much better they feel when they’re eating healthier. People will be amazed how much more time they have to spend with their family when they are picking their dinner out of their yard each day. At this point we will integrate growing more into architecture and houses so that it won’t even have to be outside of their house but possibly fully integrated.

In one year we will take our work abroad—probably first to China. We will be running to keep up with the demand of people who now find farming the coolest thing since sliced bread. It will be called a ‘farm revolution’ and the traditional ways of doing things will be no longer. People will start to devalue their own currencies and their traditional ways of thinking and seeing that the most important thing in life is our health.

In sixth months it will be about the time of my sister’s birthday. She is in New York. So it makes sense that at six months time we have already expanded to New York and gaining momentum there. We’re covering New England and quickly getting approached by suitable partners in other places around the states to grow even faster. People are seemingly addicted to the food coming out of these systems---they just can’t get enough of it! The journey begins.

Media Coverage

But Steel aspires to promote the individual indoor system to large farmland. His team rented two green houses in Shanghai Pudong New Area and built it into a 500-sq-m aquaponics farm.

This year, they have more than 67 hectares of land in Zhejiang and Shandong provinces that will be built into aquaponics farms.

Zhang Minghua, a retired engineer from the Shanghai-based Fishery Machinery and Instrument Research Institute, invented similar system that had been applied in some farms in the 1990s.

Zhang, now a fisheries adviser of Steel’s company, says that the aquaponics system is an efficient agricultural practice worth popularizing. “It is clever that they developed it from small-scaled family use to large farms.”


Creighton University MBA Students- June 2010
Shanghai International Studies University - November 2010
Shanghai University MBA students - August 2011
Shanghai Jiao Tong University AIESEC Student Outreach - February 2012
Think Act Salon March 2012
Shanghai University Students April 2012
Act Today, Green Tomorrow April 2012
AIESEC Green Power Now April 2012
Earth Day University of Shanghai Science & Technology April 2012
Green Cup July 2012 (entrepreneurship for high school students)
University of California-Irvine MBA students September 2012
Anji Economic Development Presentation October 2012
Igniting Indigenous Innovation with Nanyang (Singapore) MBA November 2012
ISO 26000 Workshop with Keppel Land November 2012
1st SE Asia Permaculture Convergence November 2012
Social Catalyst with Castilleja School (Palo Alto) January 2013
Start of China Revolution (鱼菜革命) January 10, 2013
Igniting Indigenous Innovation with Georgia State EMBA January 2013
Hult MBA Entrepreneurship Club
Barcamp Shanghai March 2013
TEDx SJTU April 2013
University of Connecticut Business Students May 2013
Hult MBA Social Entrepreneurship Class June 2013

Irving’s Information Links for EcoPreneurs

Financing & Grants

Echoing Green, Draper Richards, and Skoll Foundations, DT/IFC Sustainable Finance Award,

These listed at bottom of this note re One Acre Fund

From: “Hannah Varnell” <>
Date: Oct 29, 2013 2:09 PM
Subject: [COMFOODJOBS - put city & state ] One Acre Fund Career Opportunities
To: <>

One Acre Fund is a rapidly-growing NGO that helps smallholder farmers grow their own way out of poverty. We currently serve 135,000 farmers in Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania, with plans to reach more than 1.5 million by 2020. We have more than 40 job openings for positions based in a variety of locations.

We are especially looking for candidates to fill our finance roles. Operations and Finance Associates will manage the growth of finance teams in Burundi and Tanzania. Finance Analysts will support the finance team through analysis and reporting in order to help us shape our strategy and achieve financial sustainability. Members of the Finance Leadership Training Program will participate in a one year leadership training program, followed by an 18-month leadership position at One Acre Fund.

For complete job descriptions and to apply, please visit

About One Acre Fund

One Acre Fund serves subsistence farmers, who make up 75 percent of the world’s poor. It provides farmers with a “market bundle” of services – including farm inputs, finance, education, and market facilitation – and is repaid for those services. One Acre Fund currently serves 135,000 farm families in Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, and Tanzania, with more than 540,000 beneficiaries living in those families. Founded only seven years ago, One Acre Fund has been recognized by prestigious early-stage grantmakers such as the Echoing Green, Draper Richards, and Skoll Foundations. In 2010 and 2011, One Acre Fund received the FT/IFC Sustainable Finance Award for Achievement in Basic Needs Financing. Website:

Jobs & Opportunities

Chance to sell and make money off aquaponics lesson plans…


From: Eitan Sussman <>
Date: Thu, Oct 31, 2013 at 4:07 PM
Subject: [COMFOODJOBS - put city & state ] Farm Manager with Keep Growing Detroit - Detroit, MI

Keep Growing Detroit (KGD), an urban agriculture organization based in Detroit, MI is excited to announce we are currently hiring for a new Farm Manager position this November. KGD’s mission is to promote a food sovereign city where the majority of fruits and vegetables Detroiters consume are grown by residents within the city’s limits. We achieve our mission by operating the Plum Street Market and coordinating programs including the Garden Resource Program (GRP) and Grown in Detroit (GID) that help foster relationships to food, grow the knowledge of food and farming, build leadership skills and capacity within Detroit’s urban agriculture community, and change the value of food while developing community assets.

The Farm Manger will be responsible for overseeing in-ground and transplant production at the Plum Street Market Garden, a 1.75-acre urban farm located in downtown Detroit, which includes a 60’x96’ heated greenhouse and multiple large raised production areas, including an established perennial flower/herb garden and apiary. The Farm Manager will also work closely with Grown in Detroit program staff to coordinate harvest for sale and provide farm-related training and technical assistance to urban market gardeners. Please see the attached posting for more details; the application deadline is November 8th with a start date of November 18th. To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to Eitan Sussman at Please include Farm Manager job posting in subject line.

Please share within your networks, and be in touch if you have any questions or for more information.

Visit us!
Keep Growing Detroit
76 E. Forest, Detroit MI, 48201

Data Collection

This is an imperative part for us to improve the systems. I just bought a system from these guys and hope to find some people to test it.

Also, my mom sent me these guys

Soil IQ Sensor

Soil IQ has built a wireless soil sensor for small gardens and farms to help regular people grow a healthier supply of fruits and vegetables. Their probe is powered by a solar panel so it can run indefinitely. They’re planning on retailing it for about $49 to both consumers and larger partners.

Critical Introductions

October 31, 2013 SEED(Student Entrepreneurs For Economic Development]]

Founder Advisor Standard Template

Research Results On Benefits of Urban Ag For Public Health

Here is research findings on the importance of agriculture programs in schools for health. Clear evidence showing it improves health and reduces obesity.

Items 1 −27 of 27 (Display the 27 citations in PubMed)

1. School gardens: an experiential learning approach for a nutrition education program to increase fruit and vegetable knowledge, preference, and consumption among second-grade students.

	Parmer SM, Salisbury-Glennon J, Shannon D, Struempler B.
	J Nutr Educ Behav. 2009 May-Jun;41(3):212–7. doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2008.06.002.
	PMID: 19411056 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
	Related citations

2. Effects of a school-based nutrition program diffused throughout a large urban community on attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors related to fruit and vegetable consumption.

	Prelip M, Slusser W, Thai CL, Kinsler J, Erausquin JT.
	J Sch Health. 2011 Sep;81(9):520–9. doi: 10.1111/j.1746–1561.2011.00622.x.
	PMID: 21831064 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
	Related citations

3. Evaluation of a pilot school programme aimed at the prevention of obesity in children.

	Warren JM, Henry CJ, Lightowler HJ, Bradshaw SM, Perwaiz S.
	Health Promot Int. 2003 Dec;18(4):287–96.
	PMID: 14695360 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free Article
	Related citations

4. The impact of nutrition education with and without a school garden on knowledge, vegetable intake and preferences and quality of school life among primary-school students.

	Morgan PJ, Warren JM, Lubans DR, Saunders KL, Quick GI, Collins CE.
	Public Health Nutr. 2010 Nov;13(11):1931–40. doi: 10.1017/S1368980010000959. Epub 2010 May 5.
	PMID: 20441683 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
	Related citations

5. Using formative research to develop the healthy eating component of the CHANGE! school-based curriculum intervention.

	Boddy LM, Knowles ZR, Davies IG, Warburton GL, Mackintosh KA, Houghton L, Fairclough SJ.
	BMC Public Health. 2012 Aug 29;12:710. doi: 10.1186/1471–2458–12–710.
	PMID: 22931457 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free PMC Article
	Related citations

6. School-based internet-tailored fruit and vegetable education combined with brief counselling increases children’s awareness of intake levels.

	Mangunkusumo RT, Brug J, de Koning HJ, van der Lei J, Raat H.
	Public Health Nutr. 2007 Mar;10(3):273–9.
	PMID: 17288625 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
	Related citations

7. Validity and reliability of a nutrition knowledge survey for assessment in elementary school children.

	Gower JR, Moyer-Mileur LJ, Wilkinson RD, Slater H, Jordan KC.
	J Am Diet Assoc. 2010 Mar;110(3):452–6. doi: 10.1016/j.jada.2009.11.017.
	PMID: 20184997 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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8. Making an IMPACT: effect of a school-based pilot intervention.

	Muth ND, Chatterjee A, Williams D, Cross A, Flower K.
	N C Med J. 2008 Nov-Dec;69(6):432–40.
	PMID: 19256179 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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9. Evaluation of a school-based multicomponent nutrition education program to improve young children’s fruit and vegetable consumption.

	Prelip M, Kinsler J, Thai CL, Erausquin JT, Slusser W.
	J Nutr Educ Behav. 2012 Jul-Aug;44(4):310–8. doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2011.10.005. Epub 2012 May 10.
	PMID: 22578965 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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10. Impact evaluation of the Northern Fruit and Vegetable Pilot Programme - a cluster-randomised controlled trial.

	He M, Beynon C, Sangster Bouck M, St Onge R, Stewart S, Khoshaba L, Horbul BA, Chircoski B.
	Public Health Nutr. 2009 Nov;12(11):2199–208. doi: 10.1017/S1368980009005801. Epub 2009 May 28.
	PMID: 19476675 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Global Student Leader Summit In Shanhai To Include Aquaponics

Here is the talk I told you about in March on aquaponics. I am mentioning SWF of course and the badge learning program. There will be 42 teachers from USA bringing students to China and about 200 students total from USA and China.

Here is information on the summits:


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