The Organic Farm Tour and poet laureat of Industial Ecology: Sustainable Shanghai Day 8 Part 1

I had high hopes of visiting the ocean and organize a dive for my reclaimin’ the ocean project, atlas, I wasn’t able to make contact with a dive master who was willing to go with me (they only dive in a nearby lake that was filled by a dam). And I was laughed out of the room when I asked if anyone would like to join me for a trip to the ocean. Apparently, people just don’t go to the ocean in Shanghai~ it’s too polluted.

I decided to settle on a trip to the aquarium, which is supposed to be amazing~ but before I knew it the day filled with interviews. And so today I will take you on a tour of The Organic Farm, a visit with Peggy Liu of JUCCCE, a visit to the InterfaceFlor showroom to meet Patrick Riliey to hear all about greening the factory system, and we’ll end with a lovely interview with Chinese youth Flora Lan. (Yes~ this day will be split into 2 blog posts).

IMG_1770First Stop: The Organic Farm. (That’s the official name.) I actually had to be vetted through a special system since the government restricted certain areas to visitors during The World Expo. The farm is Chinese owned and managed by ex pats. The result is a sophisticated marketing system that puts a large emphasis on transparency (huge issue re: food issues in China), thus it is set up to manage tours. They are nationally certified through the OFD system, and grow a range of products, noticeably many foods that will appeal to ex pats.

There are 6 farms in China, and apparently catered to a high-end clientele. While organic produce is becoming popular in China, it is still considered a luxury item and status symbol. They sell their produce to super market chains, and have a VIP organic meal and food home delivery program. I’ve included a few videos, but truth be known, while it was moderately interesting, they didn’t have someone on-site that could answer my 1 billion and 1 questions (although many thanks to Martin who tried his best) so between you and me, I wish I had gone to the aquarium. Good to know it’s there though.

Next visit: Interfaceflor showcase room to explore greening the factories. The full post is on Planet Green, but if you want a little something to wet you whistle…here ya go.

Ray Anderson was named “Hero of the Environment” by Time Magazine. U.S. News and Word Report named him “America’s Greenest CEO.” On the back of Ray Anderson’s book, Confessions of a Radical Industrialist, Paul Hawken went so far to call him the “poet-laureate of industrial ecology”. By now you’ve probably guessed that he isn’t out there saving whales…but wait, maybe he is, by radically changing the supply chain of industry. Meet InterfaceFLOR, they produce carpets with the goal of developing a zero net impact business model by 2020.

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