Commercial Aquaponics Training
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Commercial Aquaponics Green Banner

2008, Living Mandala
creative services by: 360 Degrees

In Association With


NorCal Aquaponics

Austin Aquaponics

Fishnet Aquaponics

Facilitators & Instructors

Max Meyers of NorCal Aquaponics

Jon Parr - SchoolGrown & Fishnet Aquaponics

Rob Nash of Austin Aquaponics

Course Overview

Wether you are a beginner, a backyard hobbyist, a homesteader or a skilled professional wanting to start a career in Aquaponics this Commercial Aquaponics Training has something to offer. This course is will provide you with a solid foundation, in depth information, and hands-on experience for designing and building cutting-edge Permaculture based Aquaponics Systems at any scale - from backyard to commercial. Wether you want to grow food for you and your family, a small business or a fully commercial operation, this course will give you the foundational tools, information and experience you will need to support you in whatever Aquaponic endeavor you are interested in for years to come. At a time of global climate change, depletion of resources, pollution of water and huge losses of top soil worldwide, there has never been a more important time to learn about Aquaponics.

This Commercial Aquaponics Training will be led by our incredible team of Aquaponics instructors, professionals and educators from around the world: Including:

  1. Max Meyers of Nor Cal Aquaponics - Known for combining the sciences of Aquaponics & Permaculture, Max brings 15 years of Permaculture experience as a farmer, homesteader, designer, and teacher, has a lifetime of raising fish, and a brilliant, technical mind.

  2. Jon Parr of Fishnet Aquaponics & SchoolGrown - pioneered one of the largest commercial Aquaponics systems in the world with of over 8 acres of Aquaponics in greenhouses.

  3. Rob Nash of Austin Aquaponics - bringing over a decade of experience with large scale Aquaponic farming techniques and hybrids.

This Commercial Aquaponics Training is sure to be one the largest diversity of instructors and hands on experience ever offered in an Aquaponics training!

Commercial Aquaponics Systems

Course Description

Aquaponics is one of the most sustainable and productive farming systems in the world. It combines Aquaculture and Hydroponics to create more self-sufficient, closed-loop, systems that use only a fraction of the water, labor, energy, etc. that other methods use. Combining Permaculture Design with Aquaponics creates an even more sustainable, dynamic, productive & regenerative system. In this training you will learn some of the most cutting-edge pioneering aquaponics systems from various successful experts in the field, and gain a solid foundation from which to create your own Aquaponics System, Farm & thriving Green Business appropriate to your climate, ecology, dreams, & desires.

Course Details

This Course includes:

  1. A detailed Aquaponics Course manual covering all aspects of Aquaponics including:

  2. Day-to-day operation of the system

  3. Design checklist

  4. Field tested formulas, calculations, estimates and guidelines.

  5. Complete designs, plans and materials lists.

  6. And much more in this nearly 100 page manual.

  7. NorCal Aquaponics Systems step-by-step construction manual with variations and site specific applications intended to make it easy for anyone to build an Aquaponics system.

  8. A set of detailed construction plans, including site plans, and piping schematics.

  9. Commercial Aquaponics Greenhouse System detailed designs from Rob Nash or Austin Aquaponics.

  10. Personal Q & A with successful experts in the field.

  11. *This Commercial Aquaponics Training will include all of the above as well as a design element focus on how to design a system specific to your individual climate, ecology, dreams, and desires - wether it is for a small personal system or a more large scale commercial system. Our intention is to empower you with cutting-edge information to get started in this promising new Green Career of the Future, and technology of the ancient past.

John Parr - Commercial Aquaponics Training

Permaculture & Aquaponics

By bringing Permaculture Design principles and practices into Aquaponics, we are closing many loops, inefficiencies, and energy drains that exist in more conventional systems, as well as integrating the system appropriately into the larger landscapes and ecologies it is a part of, making it a much more holistic and sustainable enterprise. Closed-Loop Aquaponics focuses on designing aquaponics systems that that produce as much of the system’s needs (water, energy, fish, feed, heat, gas, etc.) on-site and within the system itself as possible. Products of the systems can include; solar electricity, solar heated air, solar heated water, fish, prawns, vegetables, fruit, aquatic plants, algae, minnows, snails, worms, dry and liquid fertilizers, methane gas, and more. By using the Permaculture Design process, we learn to design systems appropriate to diverse climates and unique ecological niches to meet various needs, dreams, and desires.

Student Testimonials

“The highest praise I can give this course is the ability to take it home and immediately apply the principles. I received a thorough understanding of the subject and feel I could build my own system with the information given.” - Anne, Santa Cruz, May 2012

“I was looking for a course to help me start my system, and was a little worried this wouldn’t cover everything... but boy was I wrong! It covered everything I expected and so much more! I’m excited to go home feeling fully capable to build my system, and perhaps 3 or 4 others I had no idea about before!” - Mike, Santa Cruz, May 2012

“This course was so jam-packed with information my head felt like an over soaked sponge! I feel like the amount of info I received will continue to ooze out my ears and inform a lifetime’s work in this field. I highly recommend it for any and all persons interested.” - Susan, Ukiah, May 2011

“This course is a must for anyone wanting to engage in urban agriculture.” - Matthew, Santa Cruz, May 2011

“This course topped all my expectations and is the best aquaponics course I have taken. The information delivered was exceptional, beyond what I have seen, and more than I ever thought possible for aquaponics. Max and the Living Mandala support staff are very friendly, knowledgable people doing great work in the world. Thank you for this offering.”

- Gary, Ukiah, Aug 2010

“Max is a brilliant designer, an extraordinary human being, and a natural teacher. His breadth of experience, passion, integration of regenerative design principles, creativity, depth of knowledge on the subject, and freedom of sharing information, are truly a gift.”  - Palika, Santa Cruz, May 2012

“This course is all about empowering each of us with the tools and techniques to take responsibility for our future by creating a sustainable food source and sharing this on so many levels.”

-Susan. Santa Cruz, 2012

Commercial Aquaponics Systems


For questions and more information regarding the course:

e-mail: aquaponics(at) or

call: (707) 285-7231

Commercial Aquaponics Training Register Here Button

Commercial Aquaponics Training Avater

Commercial Aquaponics Training Register Here Button

Tuition & Registration

Includes Commercial Aquaponics Training Certification, Course Materials (including 100 page course manual with detailed designs), and Hands-on Experience.

Standard Tuition: $1295

Early Bird: $995 - (Before July 1, 2015)

Permaculture Design Course Graduates, Aquaponics Course Grads, & College Students: $895

To support the permaculture movement and our commitment to further empower local sustainability efforts, we are offering a special discount to Permaculture Design Course Graduates, Aquaponics Course Graduates, and college students.

* There will be a small registration fee in addition to the above prices.

To Register for the Commercial Aquaponics Course Click Here.

Commercial Aquaponics System at Auqatin Aquaponics

Meals & Lodging

Course tuition includes beverages and light snacks and lunch during the course. Participants are responsible for their own dinner and lodging. The course will be held at School Grown’s Community Center Building in Half Moon Bay, CA, and hosts various examples of commercial, home, and school aquaponics systems. There are local hotels, camping options, and other lodging possibilities available near by. We will send you more information on local lodging upon registration packet.

Hosting Site - SchoolGrown Community Center

SchoolGrown is dedicated to promoting sustainable agriculture, savvy water use, and resource conservation through advocacy, education, research, and service. They accomplish their mission by placing L.E.A.F. greenhouse labs in neighborhood schools.

The SchoolGrown Community Center, located in Half Moon Bay, California, hosts various examples of commercial, home, and school aquaponics systems as well as educational programs. The systems are designed by Jon Parr, founder of SchoolGrown, renowned aquaponics educator and engineer.

Commercial Aquaponics Training Building at SchoolGrown Aquaponics

Aquaponics Facts







Max Meyers - Commercial Aquaponics Training

Why Aquaponics?

Growing our food in closed systems that require no soil allows us to farm soil and water outside the system! We plant soil and water in our damaged and depleted landscapes which not only aids in the restoration of the soil, groundwater and native forests, but has the added benefit of offsetting greenhouse gases by removing carbon Dioxide from the atmosphere. This is one of the practices used in what we call “Carbon Farming”. Soils contain approximately 75% of the carbon pool on land — three times more than the amount stored in living plants and animals. Did you know that 1” of healthy top soil spread over 1 acre of land sequesters the same amount of carbon a healthy forest of the same size does annually? It is estimated that our crop and range lands lose 4 tons of topsoil every year for every person alive! That’s 21 gigatons of soil washed or blown out to the sea and lost for productive use on land, releasing vast amounts of carbon in the process (New Scientist, December 2006). Being able to use land considered “Undesirable” by conventional farming, Aquaponic farmers have the added benefit of access to cheap lands and lease agreements. Often using otherwise unused space such as fill, gravel, concrete, abandoned commercial sites, even roof tops. “The only limit to our designs is in the mind of the designer”!

Watch a Video of Max Meyers of NorCal Aquaponics Featured in Time Magazine On-Line

Max Meyers - Time Magazine Aquaponics Video

Watch a Video of Rob Nash of Austin Aquaponics Featured in Central Texas Gardener

Rob Nash - Aquaponics Video

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Max Meyers

Max Meyers - Commercial Aquaponics Training
Maximillian Meyers is an Ecological Designer, Permaculture Teacher, Commercial Aquaponic System Designer/Installer, Rainwater and Greywater System specialist, Farmer and the Executive Director of the Mendocino Ecological Learning Center - a nonprofit educational organization and ecological reserve offering green job training and sustainable living skills to the public. In addition to the work at MELC, Max provides Ecological design services through his businesses Osiris Designs and NorCal Aquaponics. He is passionate about all things related to a more just and sustainable world. He has been studying, practicing and teaching Permaculture and Ecological Design for 14 years. Since graduating from College with a B.A. degree in Culture, Ecology and Sustainable Communities, Max has become a certified Permaculture designer/teacher, water systems specialist and working professional. He has been fortunate enough to study with people like Bill Mollison, Geoff Lawton, Sepp Holzer, Tom Ward, Jude Hobbs, John Valenzuela, Penny Livingston, and many others in places like the United States, New Zealand, Australia, Thailand, Mexico, Colombia, Brazil and Hawaii. Some of his fields of study and practice include: Natural Building, Organic Farming, Integrated Rainwater Harvesting, Alternative Transportation, Mushroom Cultivation, Sustainable Forestry, Beekeeping, Animal Husbandry, Renewable Energy, Biogas Production and use, Greywater Systems design and installation, Vermiculture, seed saving and many other sustainable technologies, methods and skills. He has experience teaching Permaculture, Natural Building, Cob Construction, Renewable Energy, Organic Farming, Beekeeping and others. His work has been featured in the best selling book Gaia’s Garden: A Guide to Homescale Permaculture, as well as radio and television programs.

Lead Instructor

John Parr

John Parr - Commercial Aquaponics Training
Jon Parr, a leader in the emerging Aquaponics movement comes from a background of fine craftsmanship, specializing in granite. Since his early childhood, Jon has been an avid fisherman of the California waterways. As a fish hobbyist, Jon has befriended many of California’s aquaculture community. Those connections with the fish community has helped many aquaponics farmers fill their fish tanks.

Jon discovered aquaponics overcoming a problem with ground squirrels at his home in the Santa Cruz mountains. Jon left the craft / construction trade to pursue the aquaponic arts full time.  During the years of research and real-world application, Jon developed numerous expansive aquaponic systems. He pioneered new methods, practices, equipment and understanding, many of which have become the standards of the Aquaponic industry today.  Jon pioneered one of the largest commercial aquaponics systems in the world - an 8 acre farm under greenhouses in Watsonville, CA. Jon's hands-on approach to real-world application of sustainable permaculture and aquaponic production have made him a popular circuit speaker and one of the elite aquaponic industry experts. John’s current projects can be found at: & SchoolGrown.

Lead Instructor

Rob Nash

Rob Nash - Commercial Aquaponics Training
Rob Nash is the owner/operator of Austin Aquaponics and HannaLeigh Farm based out of Austin, Texas. He has been designing and implementing commercial scale aquaponic systems since 2007. Rob combined his years of hands on experience with training from Dr. Rakocy on the UVI model and at Nelson & Pade aquaponics, to pioneer one of the first commercial operations to implement the popular, integrated or media-raft-hybrid commercial systems. Rob’s passion for and dedication to educating others about this industry has allowed him to become a sought-after source of knowledge in the southern region, where he has taught hundreds of students. His farm and aquaponic systems have been showcased on The Central Texas Gardener and in 2013. He currently offers training workshops, consultation, and build/design of aquaponic systems for the beginner to advanced gardener, as well as commercial-minded aquapon. Rob is a one of the original founding members of the aquaponic association, and has served as a chairman sense its formation in 2011.

Guest Instructor

Affiliate Organizations & Sponsors

NorCal Aquaponics Logo
SchoolGrown Aquaponics Logo
LEAF Commercial Aquaponics Greenhouses

Fishnet Aquaponics Logo
Austin Aquaponics Logo

Become a sponsor or affiliate of this course!

For details email:

For Upcoming Courses, Workshops, & Events in Permaculture, Ecovillage Design, Sustainable Living Skills,

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Commercial Aquaponics Training

With Applied Permaculture Design - Complete Training

Backyard, Family & Commercial Systems

Aug 20 - 23, 2015  

SchoolGrown Community Center

Half-Moon Bay, California