Mr. Ton Stok presented Wellant’s innovative aquaponics project ANNIE (New Novelty in Education) to representatives of the green sector from 21 European countries. The presentation was part of the Europea symposium held in Blainvillle sur Mer from 2nd to 7th April.

The aquaponics project, powered by Erasmus+, resulted in a broad network of students, teachers, farmers, businesses and governments that will all integrate aquaponics in their work. Thanks to the project, aquaponics is now part of the curricula of vocational schools in Spain, Romania, Portugal, Slovenia and the Netherlands. In Spain 53 VET teachers and students followed a 1 week aquaponics course. During the project 7 students from both the Netherlands and China graduated on aquaponics. The Chinese students researched how aquaponics can enter the labour market in China.  


Aquaponics - a sustainable system to grow food

Aquaponics is a circular system where aquaculture (fish farming) and hydroponics (plant breeding in water) come together. The cycle starts with the feeding of the fish to produce ammonia rich waste, which accumulates in the water. The waste water is pumped to the grow beds. The plant roots filter the water which now contains nutrients for the fishes. Aquaponics gives you the opportunity to grow food locally and without the use of pesticides and antibiotics. Aquaponics supplies ten times more food per square meter (vertical farming), with a minimum of water consumption. This makes it ideal for urban areas and dry, nutrient-poor countries. Aquaponics can thus contribute to future food problems, the reduction of CO² emissions and the reduction of precious drinking water for irrigation.

About Europea

Europea International is an association working for the development of vocational education and training (VET) in the green sector of Europe. This sector covers a wide field of professions within agriculture, horticulture, forestry etc. At present, Europea organizes 25 national Europea networks, which represent more than 1.000 vocational schools and institutions all over Europe.


About Wellant

Wellantcollege is the largest agricultural (pre-)Vocational Education and Training (VET) institution in Europe with over 13000 students and circa 1400 teaching staff. Additionally Wellantcollege provides professional courses and training as part of Lifelong Learning from the various centres of excellence that are linked to the vocational schools.

Interested in an aquaponics training or workshop? Contact us at