Lancing College pupils try homegrown salad from new hydroponic farm

Lancing College has recently taken delivery of the new GrowModule365, a portable hydroponic growing system, which will allow the College Catering team to grow their own leaves, herbs, young vegetables and soft fruit any time of the year for use in the school kitchen.

The College has an innovative and sustainable approach to food for its pupils and staff. Alongside the College’s own Farm, the GrowModule enables the cultivation of large quantities of tasty produce, cost-effectively and all year round, whether it’s day, night, winter or summer. The advanced hydroculture enables the growing of plants without soil, using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent technology.

The advantages of hydroponic farming include enhanced nutritional value, less water usage and no harmful chemicals, minimal power consumption, and a quick turnaround as the process from seeding to harvesting usually takes no longer than 10 days. All with the added benefit of zero food miles.

The first harvest produced an exceptional bounty of micro coriander, sorrel, marjoram, chives, nasturtium, pea shoots, choy sum, rocket leaves and lamb’s lettuce. A week later, the second harvest brought a variety of baby vegetables: beetroots, turnips and leeks.

Hannah Bond, General Manager of the Catering Department, was intrigued when she heard about the possibility of growing vegetables, salads and herbs in a quick and sustainable way. She commented: “We look forward to providing our students with the highest quality fresh produce all year round. Being sustainable is certainly one of the objectives in the long term and this, alongside the College Farm produce we already utilise in the kitchen, is another small step in the right direction.”

The module will also open up plenty of opportunities for the students at the College to learn about the science and technology behind hydroponic farming.

Find out more about this ground-breaking new system on their website: