Reno Rebirth: The great indoors


After eight months of construction and growing, the startup Which Came First Farm between Reno and Pyramid Lake just sold its first crop of herbs and leafy green vegetables.

They were grown indoors.

“We built it specifically for the quality of food for our own families, and it’s grown to fill a gap in availability of local food year-round,” said the farm’s manager, Greg Jones.

Fish swim in aquaponics tankRestaurants, food distributors and residents want more locally grown food, but one problem is the harsh conditions in Northern Nevada that leave a limited window for growing traditional crops, as well as a limited variety of crops.

Enter a solution: indoor agriculture.

A few farmers are giving it a go in Northern Nevada, and a conference co-sponsored by the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development in Las Vegas hopes to bring it to the forefront of discussions.


“Our first really good crops were herbs: chives, flat-leaf parsley, basil, cilantro,” Jones said.

Young tilapia swim in a tank. When they are mature, their droppings will be used to fertilize vegetables at an aquaponics farm named Which Came First Farm between Reno and Pyramid Lake. (Marilyn Newton/RGJ photo)

They were sold through the Great Basin Food Co-op’s DROPP program. The acronym doesn’t quite match, but it stands for Distributors of Organic & Local Produce

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