New Zealand & ‘Number 8’ Wire

A little known fact unknown outside of this group of islands is the cultural importance that galvanized steel wire has to the small South-pacific nation of New Zealand. In this country of just over Four Million People the locals are said to be bought up on a number 8 wire mentality. That is to say that a New Zealander (or Kiwi) is adaptable, innovative and with a piece of number 8 wire can fix just about anything.


So where does this term come from? Number 8 wire was a standard British gauge of wire which was used extensively throughout New Zealand for a multitude of purposes; primarily for fencing and within the agricultural industry. It has since been replaced (along with the imperial system of measurement) with the equivalent metric 4mm gauge but the spirit of term and mentality of New Zealanders still lives on as you can see below; where creative and patriotic New Zealanders such as this Morrinsville farmer, Mr Tony Gray have found a niche use for the wire in a more artistic context.


Ironically the vast majority of such wire was and is imported into New Zealand and this trend continues today this is not dissimilar to the iconic New Zealand ‘Kiwifruit’ which is in fact of Chinese origin. Shanghai Metal Corporation manufactures Galvanized steel wire in any number of customizable thicknesses making it suitable for any number of purposes and applications. To find out more or see how we can customize this material to your requirements your can visit our website here.

Furthermore to continue reading industry and product related articles you can follow us on FacebookWordPress, Tumblr, Twitter & Linkedin. Or by using your smart device, scan the QR code below!

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Dominick F.//SMC Editor

Sources:100% PureNZ; MotorbikeHolidays; Waikato Times


Container Greenhouses – The Urban Organic Heaven

What if you wanted to eat locally produced and reasonably priced fresh organic fruits and vegetables during cold winter? Now it is possible, thanks to shipping containers.


Companies such as Freight Farms and PodPonics have introduced a new business model that converts second hand shipping containers into high-quality greenhouses that can be relocated almost everywhere. Every shipping container is manufactured according to ISO standards and they are also designed to be stacked into multiple layers. This enables the establishment of even bigger greenhouse complexes.


One major advantage of container farms is that now farms can be located closer to the places where the food will be eaten. Thereby, say, restaurants can minimize their shipping costs and still offer their customers fresh and high quality food. Also the technology associated with the business ensures a safe plantation of fruits, herbs and vegetables.


Damien Chivialle‘s model of urban farm units (UFU) has a system that uses live fishes and to to fertilize and recycle the farms water. Every container has a fish tank whose water flows in a closed circuit. The fish feces are broke into pieces that are utilized as fertilizers. The system also produces some methane for the farms secondary energy source. (source)


Also PodPonics’ solution is said to use 90 % less water because the water is recycled. The roots grow in water, not in soil. This solution minimizes the use of fertilizers and enables the adding of nutrients only as needed (source). PodPonics’ and Freight Farms control systems can both be operated with a smart phone.


The use of shipping containers as green houses seems to enhance the nutritional values of vegetables, herbs and fruits. It also enables companies to produce them closer to the people who end up eating them. Because of a really low Co2 footprint and lack of pesticides, urban farms create ultimate food safety. Now this food safety can also be enjoyed by average consumers because the cost of maintenance of urban farms seem to be feasible. For example PodPonics’ containers cost US 1800 to 2800 depending on their condition (source).


In order to establish an urban farm, shipping containers need to be purchased. Shanghai Metal Corporation is a reliable provider of internationally standardized shipping containers. More information can be found on our website ( Please also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. You can also download our mobile application by scanning the QR code below.


Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Singularityhub, Designboom, Forbes, Overgrow the System, Pando Daily, Motionpictures blog

Fabulously Creative House

The international design firm Playze has completed their design for Tony’s Farm container hotel. Tony’s Farm is the biggest organic farm in Shanghai, and it produces fruits and vegetables without any pollution.

Tony's Farm
Tony’s Farm

Tony’s Farm does not fix its eyes only on vegetable production, while they lead the customers to live a natural life. The farm worker and interviewer have an intersection in this building. It has complete functions including main reception centre, lobby which will be used for hotel reception, VIP section, new offices and existing warehouse where the organic agricultural products are classified and packed. The working area of the building is designed to be absolutely transparent, and it is convenient for the visitors to watch the whole production process, which can promote customers’ confidence for the quality of products.

Tony's Farm
Tony’s Farm

Meanwhile the company’s operation principle, energy conservation and environment protection, actuates the design of the building. The hotel is consisted of 78 containers, the size of the containers depends on the demands of functions and local climate. The cantilever beam is the main entrance of the building and then it comes to the lobby and the reception, later you will see three-storey high column and it is the most important part of the building. Later visitors will be leaded to a courtyard and take a sightseeing bus to hotel guest rooms which are fanned out across the farm and enjoy natural life.

Containers can be made into houses with various lifestyles, such as coffee shop, like Starbucks in the suburb of Seattle, tea house, performance platform and even your warm home.


Shanghai Metal Corporation experienced team aims to work closely with clients so to develop custom designs that satisfy their unique set of requirements. We offer reliable service in the design, manufacturing and installation of modern, efficient and comfortable container houses. In addition, we offer a range of different container house kits for you to choose from.

For our full list of products that we offer check out our website here. Be sure to join the conversation in our LinkedIn group, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Try also our new mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

You can also read more articles by our team at SMC:

Copper an Egyptian symbol of eternal life towards an increasing symbol of sustainability. 

Shipping Container Swimming Pools!

The Endless Potentials of Galvanized Steel

Can Container Pop-up Shops Challenge e-Commerce?

Top 3 Ammunition Alternatives

End Hunger and Extreme Poverty in Africa

Drunk Man Found In Container Bound For The USA



Annette X.//SMC Editor




The Crate that Keeps on Giving

Forget all the things you think know about farming. If Boston natives Brad McNamara and Jon Friedman have it their way, farms may soon be moving to a city near you. In 2010 the two friends joined forces to address the inefficiencies of modern farming practices and worked to design a new and more sustainable method of growing crops. The two created a hydroponic farm that operates inside of a shipping container that can be installed in any location that has access to electricity and water. Using their new design, they founded Freight Farms, thereafter raising nearly US$31,000 through the crowd funding sight Kickstarter in order to produce the first unit.

Brad McNamara, one of the founders of freight farm.

The Freight Farm utilizes 40-foot-long shipping containers that are climate-controlled and lit by energy efficient LED lighting systems that are electronically monitored. Given its ability to grow a variety of 3,600 unique plant types, climate customization within the unit is essential. The company has created tools to monitor conditions within the container via smart phone app which updates the user with information regarding temperature and humidity within the unit.

Left side of picture: Digital control unit and monitoring system.

The prefabricated Freight Farm has the potential to be installed in a wide range of locations such as vacant lots, leased properties, or underutilized recreation centers. A crate purchaser has the ability to create a Freight Farm structure that is stacked four crates high, and eight deep. The company claims that inexperienced farmers can achieve crop yields of 60%, while some experts have experienced yields of 95%. To increase the ease of use Freight Farms has been modifying its user instructions to provide more visuals that will simplify the process for all.

Freight farm’s advanced LED lighting system.

With a starting price tag of US$60,000 per crate, and US$180,000 for a solar powered variant, the Freight Farm is still largely expensive for the average market consumer. However, the company is currently working on creating distributor sponsorship networks that will allow for new farmers to try their hand at supply crops for regional food distributors.

Shanghai Metal Corporation currently provides a variety of new shipping containers that can be custom tailored based on customer requests. We hope that inspiring design like Freight Farm will encourage all to explore their own ideas for shipping container use.

If you already have an idea, but need shipping containers check out our current offerings, click here 

To view  metal and construction products as well as SMC company information check out our website: click here

—And You Can Always Join The Conversation Here—


Twitter: (@Shanghai_Metal)


Source: Wong, Kristine A. “Can Tech Startups Change the Way We Eat?” Guardian News and Media, 31 Oct. 2013. Web. 17 June 2014.