Over the past year at SucSeed we have learned more and more about the importance of getting youth growing. We face a lot of challenges in the agriculture sector around the world; from increasing demand, global pandemics to food contamination outbreaks. I fully believe that today’s youngest generation will completely disrupt how we grow food. They are going to be the answer to so many challenges that agriculture sector faces. We need our youth to start growing today!
With this in mind, SucSeed launched a Micro Jar kit in April! Given everything happening with COVID-19, we received messages from many teachers across Canada saying that their students were midway through growing fresh lettuce, tomatoes, peppers and more when their schools shut down. Teachers expressed how the students were disappointed that they didn’t get to harvest their vegetables. We wanted to give students a chance to have a full growing cycle themselves! We wanted our Micro Jars to be an easy, fun way for youth to learn the basics of hydroponics while growing delicious and nutritious microgreens! Originally we started with a mix of alfalfa and broccoli seeds but are in the process of launching five new types of microgreens in a variety of colours!
Microgreens are a vehicle to teach the next generation some very important life skills, such as:
How to Care for a Living Thing
Caring for plants teaches children empathy, an incredibly important skill to teach given the current state of the world. Typically children would be encouraged to share toys, snacks etc. However, our world post-COVID is changing. Many daycares and summer camps are having to stop the sharing of supplies for day to day activities. Caring and nurturing for a plant allows children to develop a connection around what living things need to thrive. They learn that their plant needs food, water and attention to flourish. Often children take it a step further and begin to understand that they are the ones that can provide those simple things that it needs to thrive and will relate this to how they can help other people and animals in the world by providing similar things. With such a changing world it is important for all of us to be caring and empathic. Allowing children the opportunity to be responsible and care for a living thing will allow them to gain those skills from a young age.
Where Their Food Comes From
Inquiry based learning is something that often comes up concerning to growing plants. Things are changing daily and SucSeed’s micro jars allow children to constantly wonder why and how the plants actually grow. Once they see microgreens grow, children often continue to wonder where other food comes from. “How do vegetables end up in the grocery store?” “What are the green things coming our of the tops of carrots?” These are some of the questions we often hear from the children we work with. Developing a healthy relationship with food and understanding where it comes from is important for a child’s development. It is also critical for the agriculture sector; 1/8 jobs in Canada are in the agriculture sector and we need more young people wanting to be a farmer and wanting to become a part of it.
Importance of Eating Healthy Food
Eating healthy is important at every stage of life. Getting children involved with growing vegetables is one of the best ways to get them eating healthy. Children are more likely to eat and like the vegetables that they grow over the ones that they purchase in stores. Microgreens tend to be sweeter and we are more nutritious then normal greens! They are a great way to get children excited about greens and then use them to introduce other leafy green vegetables like lettuce and kale!