The modern garden patch

Marcus Tullius Cicero once said that, “if you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need”. But in an era where we have smartphones and tablets as libraries, what about the garden? Should it not also be in close proximity to us as our modern libraries? With a slick, modern and portable design that not only gives us the joy of successfully planting our own crops, but also supplementing our diets like the words we read supplement our souls?

Cue, Homefarm- a product made for the urban dweller who does not have a garden; health fanatics- those who know the benefits of harvesting and consuming; the not so Mr/Ms green thumbs who tried to grow their own garden and failed, dismally so; the ones who are responsible for wilting plants because they always forget to water them. A convenient, modern and slick unit that enables users to grow leafy greens, herbs and microgreens with minimum effort, in the comfort of their urban homes.

Michael Currin, the CEO and lead product developer who has a background in engineering, decided to follow his passion for developing innovative, point of use products and solutions. Applying his skills of product design, product development, technology, management consulting and strategy, he created this beauty. The idea for this product came about while he was living and studying in London. He then developed, prototyped and sought to introduce this product into peoples’ lives, and ultimately enhancing their lifestyles.

The product uses hydroponics, a practice that enables people to grow crops without any soil. The process includes using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent, eliminating the use of soil fertilisers and run off as the plants get nutrients from water that is stored inside the machine. The appliance also has a dedicated app that reminds you to fill up your water tank if you cannot connect the unit to your water supply, the perfect time to harvest, nutritional information and a variety of recipes.

When the Homefarm team first came to Resolution Circle, they needed office space, a legitimate studio from where they could take this idea to market and grow into a legitimate company. During their time at the towers, they came to realise what the technology commercialisation company has to offer, from on-site expert business development advice, scenic meeting/conferencing venues, to a wonderful marketing department that is always ready to help. In an interview with MyBigStartup, a local YouTube channel for entrepreneurs, Michael described Resolution Circle as an incubator that has good links to industry, as far as manufacturing, retail, distribution, design, and specialised consulting services is concerned, “they offer them on an ad hoc need basis” he said. 

After a successful crowdfunding campaign, the team of 4 successfully raised $45,322 in July 2017. The product is now in its first development phase. The team is currently preparing for the official product launch which will take place in April 2018, where those who participated in the campaign will receive their gifts and units.

They also are currently assembling, packaging and dispatching the units in-house and developing a very detailed manual which will be handed to the manufacturer after they themselves have perfected the product. “In the lean terms, when it comes to product development process, you want to oversee the manufacturing yourself initially”, Michael said. Who better than the inventor to determine the best way to put together the invention, right?

If the idea of having an appliance that yields crops with minimum effort has vaguely crossed your mind, this is a sign. Imagine making everyone green with envy when you casually mention that you grow your own leafy greens, (leaving out ‘with minimum effort’) that never wilt, in your urban home! You can get one here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/homefarm-the-ultimate-in-home-cultivation-food-cooking#/