A Commercial Aquaponics System: Pros & Cons

Commercial aquaponics systems have been around for less than 50 years, but they have already shown themselves to be more sustainable than other methods. This makes them an increasingly popular option among farmers who want their produce without compromising quality or flavor.

An aquaponics system has many benefits, including being highly efficient, growing various plants and crops, and providing a steady supply of fresh produce. However, they have a few noteworthy disadvantages as well.

This article will cover both pros and cons and whether or not this venture is profitable for you. We would also discuss the potential costs you may incur if you decide to take on a project. Let’s discuss.

Pros Of A Commercial Aquaponics System

  • Aquaponics is a sustainable method. It is intensive and effective at producing fresh produce without relying on pesticides or other chemicals that can be harmful in large quantities.
  • It takes less water and produces more food than traditional farming, with an estimated efficiency of up two times what it would grow in one-third of the space using only 1/10th as much energy.
  • Since there is no soil used in planting, your plants won’t be at risk of developing soil-borne diseases like root rot which can kill them in their infancy. 
  • It allows food production in deserts or on salty, sandy islands, which would otherwise be impossible with conventional agriculture methods because of the lack of water sources for irrigation plants need during their growth cycle.
  • The daily tasks of an aquaponics system require a lot less work than traditional farming and can be done by anyone, regardless if they are male or female. It means less expenditure on labor.
Aquaponics System

Cons Of A Commercial Aquaponics System

  • The approach has several drawbacks, including high financial costs to set up. Even a small countertop unit can cost hundreds of dollars, and larger setups easily exceed a thousand bucks.
  • Certain plants need soil, so they can’t grow through the aquaponic method. Large crops are also difficult with this kind of cultivation as there are more required nutrients than aquaponics can provide.
  • Aquaponics is a great way to conserve land and water, but it comes at the expense of your electricity supply. For this system to work correctly, you will need an uninterrupted flow from dusk until dawn every day. This is difficult in locations with limited power outlets.
  • The construction and maintenance of an aquaponics system are not for amateurs. It requires professional knowledge and experience, or else you may lose money in sustaining your plants while also risking the lives of aquatic animals, which could result in significant losses.
  • When you have a system in which both the fish and plants are closely monitored, it is easy to make sure everything is going according to the plan. If anything changes from their everyday living conditions or they encounter pathogens/diseases, it may prove fatal and enormous losses for you.

What Is The Cost Of A Commercial Aquaponics System?

The cost of getting started with an aquaponics system depends on the components that you choose. For instance, to begin small-scale aquaponics, you will need to invest about $1400. This could increase as the project grows and includes transport costs or labor for setting up time. 

And a large-scale aquaponics system may cost you around $1,020,536 or more. Plus, the cost of a modular PVC commercial aquaponics fish tank can be $2,500 for 2,500 gallons.

Note that the initial cost of setting one up can seem high at first. Still, when considering all that it provides and brings into our lives⁠—food security being only one benefit, it becomes easier with every step taken forward.  

Is Commercial Aquaponics Profitable?

It is essential to know how these systems make money before learning whether the commercial aquaponics system is profitable. Generally, aquaponists make money by selling vegetables, fruits, and fish to wholesalers, at markets, or directly at the grocery stores. They may even earn some dollars by imparting aquaponic classes to the enthusiasts.

What makes them worthy of investment?

Aquaponic greenhouses use water and organic materials to support life on lesser land required than traditional methods. Plants can be planted closer together than on conventional farms because their roots don’t have to travel far away to get their nutrients. 

Plus, aquaponic farms have the advantage that they can be operated all year round. The ability to operate all year round also presents another major plus for these farms that can help increase profitability even further. This combines into a highly efficient and, therefore, more profitable food production system than soil-based enterprises.

Tips To Increase Your Profits

The first step to establishing a commercial aquaponics system is knowing your end goal. Consider involving someone with experience in running businesses like this or find a way for them to teach you about it so that together. Then the two of you can create an effective plan which includes all aspects needed from start to finish.

Second, the key to success in this hobby grower’s world lies in understanding what will work best for you. You can’t just go experimenting with different things without knowing how it affects your setup or whether there are any problems ahead of time. Successful aquaponics is all about hard-headed business decisions.

Last, it is crucial to understand the difference between a hobby and an income-generating business. Start your small-scale farming or fishing venture; know that it will take time before these businesses generate consistent cash flow for years, even if they are successful in their early stages.

  • Grow premium quality crops available in your region.
  • Raise edible fish instead of ornamental ones.
  • If you start, go with a small aquaponics system and learn how things work before considering expansion. 
  • Make a financial plan of five years that includes expenses, income, and fixed assets.
Aquaponic Plant

The Bottomline

A large scale aquaponics can produce fresh, healthy food for your community. Commercial aquaponics is an opportunity to be financially profitable with high-value, year-round produce while using innovative sustainable growing methods that create little or no waste. There are some considerable things before starting an aquaponics system. Follow these and earn huge profits from your commercial aquaponics system!

aquaponics experts

Welcome to The Aquaponics Guide

Hello! We are the Johnsons and the faces of The Aquaponics Guide. We have been avid gardeners for many years and growing our own food is one of our key priorities. We have found sustainable Aquaponics farming to be a life changer, which is the reason we have created The Aquaponics Guide.