About MyFarm

Belgian start-up offering food self-sufficiency to individuals

The founder’s vision

Your life is in someone else’s hands

Your life, and that of your household, is materially dependent on the stock available in the food aisles of your supermarket.

Your supermarket, on the other hand, is dependent on a handful of multinationals that single-handedly share the highly concentrated agri-food market. Since the Second World War, they have succeeded in making us prisoners of a patented, petrochemical-dependent diet.

We’ve become entangled in the comfort of having everything handed to us on a platter, with blind trust in what ends up in our mouths.

We are less and less blind. But we have no choice but to close our eyes, because this dependence prevents us from doing anything else.

This dependence has given rise to eating habits that go beyond comprehension

The consumption habits that characterize our era are absurd: the food on our plates may have travelled as far as 60,000 km (1).

All this to ensure that 20% of that plate ends up in the garbage can (2), along with the packaging that travelled with it.

All this for standardized fruit and vegetables, selected for their production, presentation and preservation qualities, and certainly not for their nutritional value or taste.

All this for fruits and vegetables soaked in pesticides and chemicals. Between 2011 and 2019, the NGO PAN Europe demonstrated a 53% increase in pesticide residues considered extremely toxic on fruit grown in Europe, even though they have been banned since 2011 due to their dangerous nature (3).

BIGH, Europe's largest urban farm on the rooftops of Brussels. And it's an aquaponic farm!

BIGH, Europe’s largest urban farm on the rooftops of Brussels. And it’s an aquaponic farm!

The great comeback of food self-sufficiency is underway

We’re no longer just talking about global warming, but climate disruption. Increasing droughts, floods and sea levels. Cooler areas are becoming wetter, and drier areas increasingly arid (4). Decarbonizing our consumption is probably the only way out.

A decarbonized world is certainly an agricultural world. Not with imposing combine harvesters scouring hectares of monoculture fields, but with a host of little hands cultivating fruit and vegetables on the walls of their buildings and in every little space available. Understanding nature and producing food will no longer be just a job, but everyone’s duty.

That’s why we believe that before long, our homes will look more like resilient micro-farms capable of producing a large proportion of their own food, giving households back their precious autonomy.

Food autonomy makes life better

Being self-sufficient in food offers invaluable advantages:

  • Being independent means being in control of your food. You regain control over what ends up on your plate. This means eating healthier: less sugar, less salt, less fat, fewer chemicals and fewer pesticides.
  • Being independent means being resilient in the face of life’s hazards. In the event of another epidemic, you and your household can go months without leaving home. If a new crisis causes products to disappear from the shelves, you’ll absorb the shock more gently than your neighbors.
  • Each step towards self-sufficiency is of course a step towards decarbonization, and therefore a saving for your household budget. Any investment in self-sufficiency is an investment that reduces expenses and can be more profitable than any stock market index.
  • Producing your own means arming yourself against inflation. When prices rise, it’s not just raw materials that become more expensive, but above all the means of production. For you, once you’ve acquired your tools, only your raw materials increase in price.
  • Finally, and perhaps most interesting of all, producing your own food gives you a deep sense of daily satisfaction. There is a significant link between growing vegetables and our well-being (5). On a neurological level, neuropsychiatrist Sue Stuart-Smith refers to gardening euphoria. Sowing and harvesting vegetables generates an influx of dopamine in the brain (6), the happiness hormone. There’s even talk today of “garden therapy” to counter stress and burn-out (7). A British meta-analysis shows that a simple half-hour of gardening helps reduce stress levels. In fact, a vegetable garden is one of the most important things people have in common in these parts of the world, where people live longer than elsewhere. The bond we feel with plants is therefore inscribed in our DNA (6).

At MyFarm, we’re no strangers to practices designed to increase food self-sufficiency (see our 12 practices for food self-sufficiency). But by far our favorite is aquaponics.

Our 12 practices towards food self-sufficiency
Our 12 practices towards food self-sufficiency

Our 12 practices towards food self-sufficiency.

What will make your home self-sufficient in food is aquaponics.

Over the past few years, in Australia, the United States and now all over the world, enthusiasts have been working hard to develop aquaponics and reclaim their food autonomy.

The success of this technique is far from insignificant. We owe it to its many advantages, which cascade to solve most of the current problems of traditional agriculture:

  • An aquaponics system can be integrated in places unsuitable for traditional agriculture, such as a small garden or a city terrace.
  • This makes extremely local production possible, eliminating all transport, packaging and uneaten food.
  • Its closed system makes it very easy to master and therefore accessible to non-professionals. There’s no longer any need to fight pests and the vagaries of the weather.
  • A closed system also means no environmental pollution.
  • The absence of pests implies the absence of pesticides, and therefore the harvesting of fruit and vegetables as they would be picked in the wild.
  • Ergonomic layout and absence of soil make sophisticated machinery unnecessary. Just pick the vegetables you can.
  • The natural fertilizer provided by fish avoids the need for chemical fertilizers. This also implies perfect knowledge of the inputs used.
  • An aquaponic system requires low-cost production resources, low energy consumption and minimal water consumption (only the water evaporated and absorbed by the plants is needed, which means water requirements are 90% lower than for traditional market gardening (8)).
  • The absence of pesticides and chemical fertilizers means reclaiming our independence from multinational agribusinesses.
  • Domestic production means reclaiming our independence from supermarkets and even the financial system. It also means a wider, tastier choice of fruit and vegetables. Finally, it means rediscovering a fundamental human need: daily contact with nature.

There are few tracks that bring together so many messages of hope. That’s why we’re firmly convinced that we’re working on the future of food. And we’re convinced that we’re doing the planet a world of good by trying to convince you to join us in this adventure.

At MyFarm, we want to give households back their autonomy

We want to make aquaponics accessible to everyone

We were inspired by what is being done elsewhere in Europe, where 3.5 m² aquaponic greenhouses can be found from €6,000, costing over €100 per planting place.
Committed to our goal of making this technology more accessible, we at MyFarm are targeting the general public by offering a solution at €23 per plant location, 4 times less expensive than what can be found in France. This makes it a 2x more attractive investment than solar panels.
And yet, since 85% of the MyFarm system is produced in Belgium, it is made exclusively from top-quality materials.