Oakville charity, company join forces to provide food banks with microgreens

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Published September 12, 2022 at 12:56 pm

GlobalMedic has teamed up with an Oakville business to set up a vertical farm program in its new Oakville location to grow microgreens to help supply local food banks. FACEBOOK PHOTO

An Oakville charity and local business have teamed up to help provide much-needed food for local food banks.

GlobalMedic has joined forces with The Six Farms to set up a vertical farm program in its new Oakville location at 1494 Wallace Rd. to grow microgreens to help supply food for local food banks.

“Wednesday is our favourite day of the week, because it’s harvest day at the farm,” said Rahul Singh, executive director of GlobalMedic which is a registered Canadian charity that has provided life-saving disaster relief and humanitarian aid since 2002.

Microgreens are one of the most nutrient dense vegetables available. Researchers have found that they are packed with nutrient levels four to 40 times that of their full-grown counterparts.

Often referred to as a superfood, microgreens have anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, neuro-protective, anti-diabetic, and anti-microbial benefits.

GlobalMedic says the process begins on Day 1 when the seeds are put into trays and then put into a germination room where they will stay for a week.

They are then taken out of the germination room and placed under lights where they will spend another week.

“(Wednesday’s) their big day because we cut and trim and we harvest them,” said Singh. “And then we put them into clamshells and get them out to food banks, and then get them into the bellies of people that need them.”

The Six Farms says its process uses the latest urban farming techniques without the use of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides.

The local company supports sustainable farming practices to protect the environment. Its latest technology hydroponic system uses 20 times less water than soil-based systems.

They also use what they call the “most energy efficient” LED grow lights to ensure “the most efficient” wavelength to perform photosynthesis.

“At The Six Farms, we have a dream and a mission to establish indoor vertical farms throughout Canada to grow not only microgreens but over 100 different varieties of baby stage leafy greens,” the Oakville company said on its website.

Global Medic is operated by the David McAntony Gibson Foundation.

The Oakville location is the home of its Food Security Response Hub and hosts its vertical farm and domestic food packing program that provides nutritious staple food items to local food banks and other agencies that support vulnerable clients.

GlobalMedic is looking for volunteers to help with the vertical farm on Wednesdays. If interested, see here.

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