Climate-Smart INMED Aquaponics® Become food-secure and economically self-sufficient LEARN MORE Meet Kararegra Mashava Farm Manager at the first INMED Aquaponics® Social Enterprise (ASE) in South Africa, the charm of farming lies in working with living organisms, “which teach you something new every day.” Microgreens: These tender baby greens are packed with nutrients and flavor, fetching top prices from restaurants and generating revenue to grow the INMED ASE social impact. LEARN MORE


The COVID-19 pandemic has heightened awareness of the critical need for local food production that can be adapted to local conditions, even where scarce water, soil and space conditions exist—mitigating the effects of climate change, and significantly reducing the carbon footprint of production. More than just providing food security, our innovative INMED Aquaponics® model was designed to transform struggling communities into thriving climate-smart hubs of self-reliance.

Please watch our video on INMED Aquaponics® Climate Smart Revolution.

How Does the INMED ASE Work?

The INMED ASE is a hub-and-spokes network of physical and virtual training sites, mentor farmers from existing INMED Aquaponics® systems and producers and learning centers in public primary and secondary schools and universities—all supported by a production, consolidation and training center and satellite farmers—with web- and app-based real-time support and links to markets and financing.

Lines of Business

Training Services

  • Technical training and skills development (hands-on and online) in aquaponics
  • Business training (hands-on and online) on how to launch an agro-enterprise
  • South African Agriculture Sector Education Training Authority (AgriSETA) accredited training in mixed farming systems

Aquaponic Production

Produce and fish from the INMED ASE hub are sold to help fund training and other services for subsistence farmers and emerging entrepreneurs.

Consolidation Services

Aquaponics farmers may sell their harvests via the INMED ASE for higher rates than on their own. Farmers also have access to inputs, such as seedlings, fingerlings and fish food, at significantly lower bulk prices than on the commercial market.

Consulting Services

INMED ASE experts provide customised consulting and training in INMED Aquaponics® to nonprofit organizations, commercial cooperatives, schools and municipalities.

How INMED Aquaponics® is Changing Lives in South Africa

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    Adaptive Agriculture & Aquaponics

    INMED is a global leader in facilitating adaptive agriculture and aquaponics projects in developing regions to help vulnerable communities thrive physically, socially and economically.

    At the heart of our program is INMED Aquaponics®, an innovative agricultural technique that integrates fish farming with hydroponics (soilless crop production) in a closed system that provides year-round harvests, requires no chemicals or fertilizers and consumes 90% less water and far less energy while producing crop yields at least 10 times higher than traditional farming.

    Combined with hands-on and virtual technical training, business education, access to financing and links to markets, INMED Aquaponics® has been a game changer for marginalized individuals and subsistence farmers. With active projects on three continents, INMED Aquaponics® is providing food security, climate-change resilience and sustainable incomes to those who need it most.

    Nutrition and Healthy Lifestyles Education

    Nutrition and healthy lifestyles education has been a cornerstone of INMED’s work for more than 30 years and has improved the lives of millions of children. Our in-country programs are designed to ensure lasting behavior change among school-aged children through integration of health and nutrition education as part of their curricula. In this way, children become agents of change with great influence on their families and communities.

    Through engaging participatory activities, children learn about the importance of nutrition, physical activity and healthy choices. Access to fresh, nutritious food via school gardens is a key component of our nutrition and healthy lifestyles education. Teachers incorporate the gardens into their lesson plans, while INMED program coordinators provide training to school food preparers and parents on how to integrate more fresh food in children’s meals at school and at home. Outcome evaluations have demonstrated dramatic reductions in obesity and malnutrition among children in participating schools.

    Maternal & Child Health

    Indigenous, impoverished and under-educated women living in remote or disadvantaged communities often lack access to adequate health care, leading to high maternal and infant mortality rates. Women living in poverty also often lack the skills and resources to raise healthy children, potentially leading to child abuse and neglect or other poor outcomes in child development.

    INMED has developed a large portfolio of highly successful programs to help children get a healthy start in life and provide their mothers with education and mentoring to raise resilient children. Ongoing programs range from intestinal worm treatment and prevention, neonatal jaundice care and community health worker training to parent education and intensive case management for at-risk families. INMED has a stellar record of improving child development outcomes among participating families.

    Youth Development and Sustainable Livelihoods

    Giving children a healthy start in life and opportunities to thrive into adulthood have been key drivers of INMED’s work for more than 30 years. Youth development is a critical component of breaking complex cycles of poverty today and for future generations—particularly in the high-unemployment regions where INMED works.

    INMED uses a combination of hands-on and distance learning to help young people develop marketable skills that lead to sustainable incomes. In South Africa, for example, INMED’s Health in Action program trains unemployed youth to lead fun participatory education and activities on nutrition, physical fitness and healthy lifestyles during daily recess time. Called Break Time Buddies, they also maintain school gardens and assist teachers with their lessons. In the U.S., INMED offers STEM enrichment, financial literacy and workforce development training to narrow the opportunity gaps for disadvantaged youth and young adults.

    INMED also is leveraging its aquaponics program as an incubator for emerging entrepreneurs. Through multi-sector partnerships, INMED’s Aquaponics Social Enterprise provides technical and business training, access to financing and links to markets for smallholder farmers, women and youth to launch their own aquaponics enterprises. INMED’s school-based systems are being integrated into core curricula as a means of vocational education in addition to serving as a source of income for schools.