From urban centers to the suburbs, hydroponic growing becomes more important with each passing year for food production. People’s heightened awareness of factors like what is really in their food from major sources to the need for buying local to reduce the carbon footprint is changing what the public perception and demands.

The best market any indoor gardener can find is one that is constant, and high end restaurants are definitely a better customer than large grocery store chains from a business standpoint. Why? Well they tend to be a most discerning client and one who is more concerned about quality versus quantity. This is especially true where organic produce is concerned. Hydroponic growers close to or inside a metropolitan area should be all ears over the release of the 2013 report from the National Restaurant Association about what the trend is from professional chefs they surveyed. If you’re a bit farther out of the city, don’t assume it doesn’t include your operation. Local, when it comes to food production will always be determined by supplying demand most efficiently.

What the survey conveys is that the trend for serving fresh local foods is shows an increase over 2012. Not just for lettuce either. The 1800 responding chefs in the United States seek to serve a more environmentally friendly menu in the new year. They want healthy foods, locally produced meats, fruits, vegetables and herbs. Aquaponic to hydroponic producers are bound to see a growing interest in their harvest that puts past years to shame. Farm to table just keeps on growing in importance.

Hydroponics: Hyper-Local Food SourceOn top of the need for local sources for meat and fresh produce, the report states that environmental sustainability is viewed as a hot culinary theme for menus in 2013. No method of farming is as environmentally friendly as hydroponics. Connecting with the best chefs in your region just got a whole lot easier. If you haven’t gotten your indoor garden going yet but were looking for a way to monetize it, stop procrastinating. The time to get growing is now. Or you could wait to see how other growers do at creating a market for their harvest. Unfortunately, by that time you will have to reduce your competition by price over quality. Additionally, the chefs’ input of the need for ‘hyper-local sourcing’ puts you in direct competition with restaurants themselves if you procrastinate.

Fresh fish that is totally free of the scary stuff found in imported foods gives the aquaponics grower a leg up over all competition for better eateries. The same is true of any crop you can produce by traditional hydroponic methods. If you step into organic hydroponic growing, the price your harvest can command rises. Meet the local market demand and they will cease to import from places afar in today’s more sustainable conscious society. This isn’t just a market that exists in huge metro areas. There are fine restaurants all over the globe that will be rushing to meet the demands of their clientele – urban, suburban and even less populated regions are taking a stance on what used to be a fringe movement.

Resource: 2013 Hot Trends for Restaurant Menus

Tammy Clayton

Tammy Clayton

Content crafter and Senior Editor at Garden Culture Magazine
Tammy has been immersed in the world of plants and growing since her first job as an assistant weeder at the tender age of 8. Heavily influenced by a former life as a landscape designer and nursery owner, she swears good looking plants follow her home. (Some feel she's got a perennial obsession, others say the problem is tomato plants.)

If you don't find her at the desk - check the gardens. When not writing and weeding, she enjoys a good book, painting junk furniture, and blending the harvest of heirloom tomatoes and chiles into salsas.
Tammy Clayton

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