Founder Jon Bales
Founder Leon Todd
UAC Launches Milwaukee into Urban Aquaculture!
The Urban Aquaculture Center (UAC) has launched Milwaukee into aquaculture production and education. The newly created non-profit offers Milwaukee an opportunity to lead the growth of urban aquaculture in the United States in partnership with the Great Lakes WATER Institute, Growing Power, and other public and private enterprises. Its first board meeting in October was hosted by builder CG Schmidt.
“With the success of the Urban Aquaculture Center, Milwaukee will become THE center for urban fish farming in America. This is the right idea at the right time in the right place” said Fred Binkowski, senior scientist at the Great Lakes WATER Institute.
Leon Todd, former Milwaukee school board director and co-founder of the UAC, said “We want to demonstrate responsible fish farming, provide sustainable urban protein production, provide a local fresh water research campus, create jobs, and offer training to others interested in aquaculture while holding the campus out as a destination that entertains, informs, and offers unique activities.”
Most people are not aware that fish is the only substantial animal protein which can be grown in the city. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) aquaculture now accounts for almost 50% of the world’s food fish and is perceived as having the greatest potential to meet the growing demand for aquatic food.
Co-Founder and former Costa Rican fish farmer Jon Bales added “Why import fish? We have everything we need right here in Milwaukee with plenty of fresh water, willing workers, and a ready market for fish. It makes no sense to eat imported fish with the baggage they carry of their high carbon footprint after being shipped thousands of miles to our market.”
The UAC seeks a campus that will accommodate the large-scale production of 200,000 gallons or 100 tons of fish annually. The Urban Aquaculture Center will be a destination offering a friendly educational center, restaurant, fish market and gift shop.
Urban Aquaculture Center