Urban Agriculture Takes Root with ZinCo’s New ‘Urban Rooftop Farming System’
City Farmers now have a partner in turning roofs into sustainable opportunities for rooftop agriculture
Stoughton, MA., (June 14, 2012) - ZinCo USA, a recognized leader in extensive and intensive green roof products, announced the release of a new green roof system designed specifically for urban agriculture. The build-up, which includes ZinCo’s new Substrate F, encourages the growth of fruits and vegetables by providing a soil compound rich with minerals and other nutrients. Combined with comprehensive cultivation and organic fertilization by farmers, it wont be long before growers will be enjoying the fruits of their labor - literally.
Interest in urban farming has increased significantly over the past decade, as consumers grow increasingly aware of food sources and suppliers. Once again, people are taking advantage of farmers markets and restaurants that use local ingredients. With increased interest, the demand has grown for more open space to grow fruits and vegetables.
While buildings often win out to urban gardens on the ground, rooftops are quickly becoming an obvious choice for people to exercise their green thumbs. “Rooftop urban farms have numerous advantages. Not only do they provide the benefits typical of most green roofs, such as decreasing the heat island effect and reducing stormwater runoff, they also provide a resource for communities that encourages entrepreneurship and self-sufficiency while producing quality, sustainable agricultural products. Our new system helps growers maximise the benefits with a system designed specifically for their needs.” says Jeremy Caron, Technical Representative for ZinCo USA.
Zinco’s Urban Rooftop Farming System can be used in conjunction with roof gardens, patios, walkways and other elements within a broader design. This flexibility gives the system the capacity to support multiple uses alongside farming, improving the productivity and value of green roofs, while meeting consumer demand for locally grown agricultural products.
A recent report from the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture reveals the average distance traveled by fruits and vegetables exceeds 1,100 to 1,500 miles from farm to plate. While this statistic is eye-opening to many, the impact on the environment from transporting food products may be even more alarming. Transportation of fruits and vegetables occurs by ship, airplane and truck. The result is a significant contribution to levels of greenhouse gas emissions. According to a report by the Natural Resources Defense Council, in 2005, nearly 250,000 tons of gases were released in California alone.
Clearly, the current agricultural model is beginning to reveal its weaknesses. The resurgence of locally grown agricultural products is a step in the right direction. Urban agricultural initiatives are turning deserted urban lots into viable alternatives to large commercial farms. Now rooftops can be too.
“At ZinCo we recognize the vital role that urban agriculture can play in improving our health, local economies and the environment. We look forward to supporting rooftop farming initiatives across the country.”, said ZinCo USA Business Development Manager, John Talcott.
You can learn more about ZinCo’s Urban Rooftop Farming System by visiting their website: www.zinco-usa.com.
About ZinCo USA
ZinCo Group is an international pioneer in designing and manufacturing green roof systems for high density urban areas. Since our inception in 1957, we have led the industry's growth and advancement by developing environmentally smart solutions that reduce urban heat island effect and improve storm water management. Our award winning products and systems help clients develop stunning landscapes that are earth-friendly by conserving energy and producing cleaner air and water in urban areas. ZinCo is fully committed to maximizing the economic, environmental and public health benefits of green roof systems. Our holistic approach to promoting green roof utilization includes: technical and horticultural research, developing standards in partnership with industry associations and sponsoring annual international conferences to build public awareness and education. Based in Germany, ZinCo has offices in over 17 countries throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas. We install over 15 million square feet of green roof systems annually on commercial, residential, industrial and institutional buildings. Our lightweight, durable green roof systems leverage German-engineered technology to imitate the beauty of nature and deliver superior environmental and economic benefits to building owners and communities all over the world.