New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
Random header image... Refresh for more!

Category — Latin America

Peace, plants and hip-hop in Colombia, South America

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

Hip-hop and agriculture might seem like a strange mix. But El AKA believes it’s the perfect partnership to unite the community. “Hip-hop attracts young people, and agriculture the older ones,” he told DW.

By Katharina Wecker
Deutsche Welle
May 11, 2017

Excerpt:

With big Creole earrings, a bandana, and the crotch of his trousers hanging between his knees, Luis Fernando Alvarez looks more like a rapper than a farmer. Actually, he’s both.

Luis, or “El AKA” as he is known in Colombia’s biggest city of Medellin, has brought his two passions together with the initiative Agro Arte – agricultural art.

[Read more →]

May 21, 2017   No Comments

Brazil: How São Paulo is tackling poverty and urban sprawl by bolstering farming

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+


Arpad Spalding is part of an initiative to boost organic agriculture on São Paulo’s urban fringes. (Ignacio Amigo)

“Urban sprawl over environmentally sensitive areas with vulnerable populations is a common theme in many Latin American cities,” says Ferreira. “And many cities all over the world are experiencing problems associated with food supply. Stimulating agriculture can help preserve these areas and increase product offering.”

By Ignacio Amigo
Cityscope
February 24, 2017

Excerpt:

Now, local leaders in São Paulo are looking to leverage this demand by promoting organic farming on the undeveloped land along the outer edges of the city. If they succeed, it will achieve many different but complementary outcomes all at once. They’ll bolster the city’s supply of fresh, locally produced food. Livelihoods of the rural poor living just outside the urban core will improve. And viable farms will erect a natural barrier to contain the city’s outward expansion.

[Read more →]

March 4, 2017   Comments Off on Brazil: How São Paulo is tackling poverty and urban sprawl by bolstering farming

Columbia: Medellin takes to urban farming to heal memories of war

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+


Leader of Agro Arte “El AKA” (Image: Richard Kelleher) Click on image for larger file.

“You could say that Colombia is a huge mass grave. There are so many people who have waited for so long to see their loved ones, and they’ve never appeared. It’s a denial of the pain when you can’t even bury them.”

By Richard Kelleher
Columbia Reports
February 24, 2017
(Must see. Mike)

Excerpt:

Parts of Colombia’s second largest urban center, Medellin, have taken to the most rural activity possible, agriculture, in an attempt to recognize the memories of war while restoring the social fabric necessary for peace.

For the past 15 years, an urban farming initiative named “AgroArte” (Agrarian Art) has brought new life to the 13th district of San Javier, once the epicenter of Medellin’s urban conflict.

[Read more →]

March 3, 2017   Comments Off on Columbia: Medellin takes to urban farming to heal memories of war

Mexico’s Ancient Floating Gardens Double As An Experiment In Urban Farming

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

Ricardo Rodriguez, founder of the De La Chinampa a Tu Mesa program. (Naomi Tomky)

When the Spanish arrived in 1519, they drained many of the lakes, shrinking Xochimilco’s agricultural capacity, and forbade the cultivation of indigenous products like chia, a seed favored for its nutritional properties.

By Naomi Tomky
smithsonian.com
January 31, 2017

Excerpt:

But weekdays, calm descends and the garden’s age-long purpose—as a place to cultivate crops—comes into relief. Ricardo Rodriguez, a 41-year-old pioneer in Mexico’s urban agriculture movement, is my guide through the quiet backside of the chinampas (floating islands) where Rodriguez helps the local farmers who are revitalizing traditional agriculture.

Rodriquez has nothing against the usual eating, drinking, and partying that goes on in the park. But he is quick to emphasize, “That’s just one of the three parts of Xochimilco.” The second part is the commercial farms that propagate huge fields of flowers using pesticides.

[Read more →]

February 6, 2017   Comments Off on Mexico’s Ancient Floating Gardens Double As An Experiment In Urban Farming

Venezuela: Urban Agriculture and the Production of Plenty for the Man

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+


Minister Lorena Freitez (fourth from the right) among dozens of others holding up pots with growing seedlings (Lorena Freitez). Click on image for larger file.

We have won the world’s first Ministry of Urban Agriculture, which not only holds a new possibility for a healthier, humane and economic agriculture, but also a niche from which to build the foundations for new forms of production that guarantee greater sovereignty.

By Lorena Freitez
Minister Of Popular Power For Urban Agriculture
Venezuela Analysis
January 6th 2017
(Must see. Mike)

Excerpt:

The first major mission of the Ministry of Popular Power for Urban Agriculture (MINPPAU) was precisely this: 29,426 productive units were registered throughout the country, bringing together 100,000 people motivated to produce, through activating the Urban Agriculture National Registry. We prioritized 10 of the largest and most populated cities from across the country in order not to distract us from urban areas and we proposed 13 short cycle vegetables with the clear intention of having the first harvest sown in these cities between 90 and 100 days and with a minimum output (50 kg of seeds and 104,000 tomato seedlings), the production of 377 tonnes of vegetables (tomatoes, eggplants, paprika, peppers, radishes, lettuce, among others) and that the produce could all be eaten at the close of the 100 day agro-urban production campaign.

This first campaign “100 Days for Urban Agriculture” was nothing more than a strategy to visualize and accompany a new political-productive “agro-urban” Venezuelan subject who, synthesizing the best of the countryside and the city, entered into economic democratization disputes. In 100 days: 1) we knew the potential of urban agriculture in Venezuela, mapping those committed to agriculture and militant in those cities; 2) we visualized the people’s capacity to solve problems; 3) we awakened restlessness and enthusiasm in those indifferent or skeptical about these new forms, subjects and productive spaces; 4) we identified the main challenges of sustainable and humane agriculture in cities.

[Read more →]

January 7, 2017   Comments Off on Venezuela: Urban Agriculture and the Production of Plenty for the Man

Brazil: In the village of Primeiro do Maio 65 families have obtained land to grow crops since 1999

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+


This vegetable garden changed my life,” said Rita da Silva (right, in yellow). A group of women organised to collectively grow vegetables and fruit to sell in the market in Caraúbas, a nearby city in Northeast Brazil. Credit: Mario Osava/IPS

The income from the garden empowers the women, particularly in times of drought when the local crops are failing.

By Mario Osava
Inter Press Service
Dec 20, 2016

Excerpt:

She is part of the Group of Women that organised in 2001 and adopted the slogan “United to overcome”, with the goal of having their own productive activities, reaffirming their rights and combating sexism.

“I used to only stay at home or in the fields, I wasn’t allowed to go out, to go to town. With the garden I started to go to the city to sell our products in the market, over the objections of my husband and my oldest son,” Da Silva told IPS.

[Read more →]

December 27, 2016   Comments Off on Brazil: In the village of Primeiro do Maio 65 families have obtained land to grow crops since 1999

Bogota, Columbia: She Turned a Massive Garbage Dump Into An Urban Farm

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

bogo
See the video here.

Bogota: 7,800,000 population. Transformation of a landfill into a farm. school, urban garden

Directed by Fernando Caneque and Paula Serna
Filmed by Daniel Barbosa
Towards the Human City
CAD Productions
(Must see. Mike)

Rosa Evelia Poveda Guerrero, known to her friends and acquaintances as Rosita, is an inspiring and tireless woman who believes in the power of urban agriculture to solve the feeding needs of the urban poor.

In 2003, Rosa found an 1,800-meter dumpsite that was inhabited by homeless beggars in the Eastern hills of Bogotá. Having dreamt about the opportunity of having an urban farm, Rosa decided to look for the owner of this site, who gave it to her under a commodatum (gratuitous loan). Then, she moved into the dumpsite, setting up a provisional camp, and started working with her two sons on cleaning the waste that had been piling up during the past 40 years.

[Read more →]

November 24, 2016   Comments Off on Bogota, Columbia: She Turned a Massive Garbage Dump Into An Urban Farm

Venezuela’s Controversial Urban Agriculture Plan

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

ventw
Tweet mocking urban agriculture plan.

When the project was presented in February, the newly created Ministry of Urban Agriculture announced that 12,000 square kilometers — about 4,600 square miles — would be planted in the first 100 days. Eight months into the project, only 21 square kilometers (about 8 square miles) of land have been cultivated, according to the ministry.

By Sofia Barbarani
Washington Post
Nov 1, 2016

Excerpt:

Some Venezuelans try to look on the bright side of the experiment: Producing their own food can reduce the time spent on the streets of Caracas, where crime is skyrocketing. For De Leandro, who was once kidnapped for ransom, this is a comforting thought. She grows a stunning array of vegetables on one of her terraces.

But not all Caraquenians have enough land to cultivate produce, and water is also in short supply due to a drought.

[Read more →]

November 1, 2016   Comments Off on Venezuela’s Controversial Urban Agriculture Plan

Venezuela’s Ministry of Urban Agriculture Faces Critics

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

vens
Residents attend a course about urban agriculture. Photographer: Manaure Quintero/Bloomberg

“Planters on Caracas balconies are not going to solve the growing problem of hunger in Venezuela,” said opposition lawmaker Maria Martinez, who sits on the National Assembly’s agricultural commission

By Andrew Rosati, Fabiola Zerpa
Bloomberg Markets
September 22, 2016

Excerpts:

Critics are quick to point to more than a decade’s worth of expropriations that left fields to fallow while a flood of cheap imports during Venezuela’s oil bonanza discouraged farming entirely. According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Land, almost 1.2 million hectares (3 million acres) were nationalized from 2010 to 2015 alone.

[Read more →]

September 29, 2016   Comments Off on Venezuela’s Ministry of Urban Agriculture Faces Critics

An Abandoned Quarry Above Rio’s Olympic Village Found New Life as an Organic Farm

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

rio
Fátima Anselmo, owner of Orgânicas da Fátima, grows organic produce in a reclaimed quarry in Rio de Janeiro. Pea vines climb bamboo stakes to her left, while banana leaves spread on the ground behind her protect a bed recently planted with carrot seeds. After finding the site in 2014, she spent more than a year and a half clearing it of rubble and building the soil from her own compost pile. Photo by Andrew Jenner.

“I always wanted to show that urban agriculture was possible,” Anselmo says. “If everyone did just a little bit of this, we’d have much healthier food and a much healthier world.”

By Andrew Jenner
Modern Farmer
August 19, 2016

Excerpt:

Anselmo estimates that restaurants and hotels make up about 70 percent of her business. (The Olympics—great news for any host city’s hospitality industry—have been very good to Orgânicos da Fátima). The rest of her sales take place at the organic farmers markets that have begun popping up all over Rio; a decade ago, there was a single such market in all of Rio, according to ABIO, an organic farmer’s association. Today, there are 19.

[Read more →]

August 20, 2016   Comments Off on An Abandoned Quarry Above Rio’s Olympic Village Found New Life as an Organic Farm

Amid economic hard times, Venezuelans turn to city farming

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

carcr Click on image for larger file.
A woman works in an urban garden in the rooftop of a building in Caracas, Venezuela July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso. See 13 photos and video after link.

Those on the ground in Venezuela doubt they will resolve all their country’s food problems, but at least want to contribute to a more nutritious diet.

By Diego Ore
Caracas
Reuters
Aug 4, 2016

Excerpt:

In the first data on the new push, Maduro’s government boasts that in the last three months, some 135,000 Venezuelans have produced 273 tonnes of vegetables, fruits and herbs in urban settings.

The production seems well short of this year’s goal of 3,500 tonnes, but some participants are enthusiastic.

[Read more →]

August 5, 2016   Comments Off on Amid economic hard times, Venezuelans turn to city farming

Haiti: Urban Agriculture – UN Web-TV

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

UN in Action, Episode #1416
Dec 10, 2013

To tackle rising food insecurity in the wake of last year’s hurricanes and drought, several UN agencies, together with local charity groups have increased efforts to improve food supply in the country. One of the local initiatives is finding innovative ways of recycling used tires as planters, helping people grow farms in their own backyards.

Link here.

July 28, 2016   Comments Off on Haiti: Urban Agriculture – UN Web-TV

As hunger stalks Venezuela, government encourages city-dwellers to start planting

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

venxSenior citizens in Caracas, Venezuela, get a lesson on urban agriculture. As the nation finds itself in a food crisis, the government is urging city-dwellers to plant fruits and vegetables. Jim Wyss Miami Herald.

The Ministry of Urban Agriculture was created this year – Inflation, hoarding reflected on dinner tables – Only 54 percent of people report eating three meals a day

By Jim Wyss
Miami Herald
May 23, 2016

Excerpt:

Caracas, Venezuela: On a recent weekday, just a few miles from where the government was holding military exercises preparing for a foreign invasion, about a dozen senior citizens were gathered in a classroom learning about another war-time innovation.

“Vertical gardens were pioneered during World War II,” a teacher said as he instructed them on how to turn plastic bottles into planters that could be hung on a wall or balcony. “We need to take advantage of every space possible.”

[Read more →]

May 27, 2016   Comments Off on As hunger stalks Venezuela, government encourages city-dwellers to start planting

Jamaican City Farmers

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

jami
Majesty Gardens backyard farmers Shana-Kay Armstrong, Anthony Bailey (centre) and Lornell Smith show some of the chickens from their farm.

Farming has typically been associated with the rural areas of Jamaica, but three young people have laid this stereotype to rest as they run a thriving livestock farm within one of the Kingston metropolitan area’s toughest communities.

By Javene Skyers
Jamaica Observer
March 29, 2016

Excerpt:

Majesty Gardens residents Shana-Kay Armstrong, Anthony Bailey, and Lornell Smith raise goats, pigs and chickens in their backyard, which serves as their main form of employment.

“Wi jus deh ya siddung an’ a reason one day and wi say, ‘yu know say nuhbody nah raise nuh chicken in the area; yu know wi can do a business out of it’. A suh comes wi just say wi a go line up some funds and go inna it,” 21-year-old Bailey said of the joint effort.

[Read more →]

April 2, 2016   Comments Off on Jamaican City Farmers

Photos of Venezuela’s rooftop food gardens

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

venezFrancisco Salazar: “With this we’re not going to win the economic war but we are beginning the battle.”

In the Great Venezuelan Housing Mission residential complex of Las Fuentes in south-central Caracas, close to 45 residents have been growing crops on the roofs of their apartment blocks.

By Jonas Holldack
Venezuelanalysis
Mar 6, 2016

Excerpt:

The plan began with the sowing of 1,200 hectares with 13 different crops, including chard, chives, eggplant, zucchini, cucumber, tomato, onion, sweet pepper, beats, bell pepper, carrots, and lettuce. At the close of 100 days, the plan is to have expanded cultivation to 12,000 hectares in order to meet 20% of the consumer demand in the eight participating cities.

[Read more →]

March 13, 2016   Comments Off on Photos of Venezuela’s rooftop food gardens