In recent years, the global demand for seafood has grown significantly, prompting a critical need for innovative and sustainable methods of aquaculture. Among those at the forefront of this eco-conscious movement is Gary Beatty, the visionary founder of Inland Shrimp Company - an extraordinary indoor shrimp farm that is revolutionizing the seafood industry. Gary Beatty's journey into aquaculture began with a passion for the ocean and a profound concern for its delicate ecosystem. With a background in marine biology and a determination to create a positive impact, he embarked on a mission to develop an environmentally responsible alternative to traditional shrimp farming. The result is the Inland Shrimp Company, a groundbreaking concept that not only addresses sustainability concerns but also promises to reshape the way we view and consume shrimp. Join Delivery Rank, as we delve into the remarkable story of Gary Beatty and the ingenious methods behind the Inland Shrimp Company.
It all started back when I was selling farms and farmland. I was exposed to the challenges faced by crop farmers dealing with excessive or insufficient water, and cattle farmers who faced their own set of difficulties. This made me think that there must be a better way to produce food. Eventually, my thoughts turned to seafood, particularly shrimp since my wife and I were both shrimp lovers. As I delved deeper into my research, I discovered that around 95% of the shrimp imported into the country was unsustainable. There was heavy use of antibiotics, and less than 2% of the shrimp were actually inspected by our FDA, and from the 2% inspected 60% of that was rejected mainly for banned substances such as hormones, steroids, and antibiotics.
This realization prompted me to explore the possibility of producing shrimp locally. However, I soon discovered that raising shrimp in warm saltwater would be a challenge in Ohio, where I am located. In case you’re not familiar, Ohio is situated in the middle of the country, near Cincinnati. The climate here is quite temperate, with hot summers and cold winters, and often intermediate temperatures that are not suitable for warm water shrimp. While it is possible to raise them outdoors, it would limit us to a single season harvest, which wouldn’t be viable for a year-round business.
Therefore, I started considering indoor production as a solution. At the time, there weren’t many people engaged in vertical farming of shrimp and seafood, which further encouraged me to pursue indoor production. This approach offers sustainability and year-round production, allowing us to have control over the entire process from start to finish. And that brings us to where I am today.
The biggest advantage we have is the ability to produce locally raised and sustainable shrimp. This allows us to obtain USDA certification, similar to how beef is certified. People know where it came from, how it’s raised, and what it was raised on. By doing this, we’re effectively reducing a significant carbon foodprint. You know what we call it? It’s the environmental impact caused by shipping shrimp over long distances. When shrimp is harvested, it’s frozen into large blocks and shipped on slow transport ships, consuming a lot of fuel, energy, and emitting greenhouse gasses. It then arrives here, gets thawed, reprocessed, repackaged, refrozen, and shipped again. Avoiding this process by producing locally allows us to engage in localized food production. It provides us with food security, allows us to employ local residents, and enables us to establish facilities in what we refer to as designated food desert areas.
One of the significant aspects is the ability to raise multiple species of seafood using a single food source. This feature brings several advantages. By utilizing one feed source, we can raise various species of seafood, which not only enhances production but also improves water quality and contributes to increased revenue.
The approach we adopt depends on the species we’re growing. For warm water shrimp, we utilize solar panels to generate both heat and electricity. We can also harness solar heat to assist in warming the building. Additionally, as we progress, we plan to incorporate geothermal energy, aiming to maximize energy efficiency. Another key aspect of our operation is the implementation of a (RAS) recirculating aquaculture system. This system allows us to recycle approximately 95% of the water we initially use, reducing water waste. In addition to these systems Inland Shrimp will also use backup generators in case of power failures. Lastly, we’ll incorporate remote sensors, and automation that’ll allow us to control the water quality and environment, collect and manage data, reduce labor costs, and alert us if there’s an issue. We call it iOS- the Internet of Shrimp!
One of the initiatives we are actively involved in is the Green Umbrella, which serves as the regional food policy and marketing council here in Cincinnati. Our aim is to support local residents by providing them with fresh, local, and sustainable seafood options. Additionally, we have plans to organize a seafood buffet event, particularly targeting homeless individuals. This event aims to bring together local causes, including partnerships with well-known professional sports teams in our area. We hope to collaborate with Kroger, a prominent supermarket chain located here, to further support and enhance this initiative. And to further help our communities out Inland Shrimp plans on locating its facilities in inner-city repurposed buildings which will help stop urban blight and decay, increase neighborhood revitalization and to hire, train and, employ local residents providing them with good paying jobs.
If you would like to find out more about Inland Shrimp Company, visit inlandshrimp.com