New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
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Boosting bees could sweeten chance of a greener Mexico City

Beekeeper Alfonso Cestelos Sanz blows smoke on a beehive at the Ectagono community project in Mexico City September 12, 2017. — Thomson Reuters Foundation picture.

Figures from the agriculture ministry (SAGARPA) show the number of hives in Mexico City, as well as honey production, dropped by about 17 percent between 2006 and 2015.

By Sophie Hares
Reuters
Oct 15, 2017

Excerpt:

Urban beekeeping is on the rise in cities such as London and New York where homeowners, companies and restaurants are setting up rooftop hives that each house thousands of bees. But strict rules in densely packed Mexico City about the location of hives restrict them mainly to the city fringes.

As the city continues to expand, reducing green areas, beekeepers have less space to work, said Adriana Pena Veliz, a vet who advises Efecto Colmena (Beehive Effect), which rescues and relocates bee swarms.

“The bees are starting to lose their habitat,” she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

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October 16, 2017   Comments Off on Boosting bees could sweeten chance of a greener Mexico City

A new urban-farming startup wants to grow mushrooms in restaurants, for all the diners to see.

Mission’s executive chef, Angela Dimayuga, cooks with varieties of oyster mushrooms grown in the Minifarm. Photographer: Adrienne Grunwald for Bloomberg

A small Minifarm starts at $2,000, measures 4-feet wide by 2-feet deep, stands 6-feet tall and can produce up to 2,300 pounds of mushrooms a year.

By Deena Shanker
Bloomberg
October 11, 2017

Excerpt:

On Wednesday, the restaurant adds its newest piece of kitsch. Nestled between the entrance and the bar, above an interior window, sits a rectangular box emanating blue light. It’s filled with extraterrestrial looking life forms: mushrooms.

Designed and built by Smallhold, a Brooklyn-based, certified-organic, “distributed farming” startup, the “Minifarm” has been in the works for months. If all goes according to plan, blue, yellow and pink oysters, king and pioppino mushrooms will replace varieties such as beech, button and enoki in Dimayuga’s beef jerky fried rice. Dimayuga beamed with excitement. “A just-picked mushroom tastes the best.”

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October 16, 2017   Comments Off on A new urban-farming startup wants to grow mushrooms in restaurants, for all the diners to see.