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Category — Latin America

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

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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.

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

Venezuela’s Controversial Urban Agriculture Plan

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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.

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

Venezuela’s Ministry of Urban Agriculture Faces Critics

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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.

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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

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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.

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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

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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.

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

Haiti: Urban Agriculture – UN Web-TV

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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

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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.”

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

Jamaican City Farmers

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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.

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April 2, 2016   Comments Off on Jamaican City Farmers

Photos of Venezuela’s rooftop food gardens

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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.

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

Venezuela Launches Ambitious Urban Agriculture Plan

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The urban agricultural initiative should extend to 12,000 kilometers of crops in the next 100 days. | Photo: AVN

In the long term, the products should be able to supply about 20 percent of the total food consumption of the residents living in the eight participating cities.

Telesur
Feb 28, 2016

Excerpt:

The 100-day Plan for Urban Agriculture started Sunday in eight Venezuelan cities in a bid to provide about 1,300 people with vegetables and fruits.

The dedicated 13 lots cover about 1,200 hectares, but should extend 12,000 kilometers by the end of the next 100 days, said Venezuela’s Vice President Aristonulo Isturiz.

Distribution plans to the urban population will be set up according to the various moments of harvest season.

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March 5, 2016   Comments Off on Venezuela Launches Ambitious Urban Agriculture Plan

Facing Severe Food Shortages, Venezuela Pushes Urban Gardens

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Mileidis Bolivar shows off the tomatoes that she grows on her rooftop garden in a Caracas slum. John Otis for NPR.

Critics say Maduro should focus on making life easier for traditional farmers. Home to vast stretches of fertile land, Venezuela could grow much of its own food. Instead, production has collapsed.

By John Ortis
NPR
Feb 16, 2016

Excerpt:

Josefina Requena is among those who have heeded Maduro’s call. Cucumbers, green pepper, passion fruit and other produce grow in the front yard of her home in a slum in Caracas, the Venezuelan capital. She also has a chicken coop.

On a sweltering recent afternoon, I joined Requena and some other Caracas residents on a hike into the mountains that rise above the city. They were on a mission to find dirt for their gardens — which they keep on balconies, rooftops and small plots of their homes. After digging up the fresh earth, they lugged it back down the mountain.

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February 25, 2016   Comments Off on Facing Severe Food Shortages, Venezuela Pushes Urban Gardens

Venezuela launchs a national conference on urban agriculture

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Under President Nicolas Maduro’s predecessor Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan government began promoting urban agriculture as a way to improve food sovereignty. | Photo: Minci

If we want a society that is viable, progressive, socialist and humanist, then we need … productive cities,” Maduro stated.

Telesur
Jan 30, 2016

The Venezuelan government is meeting with grassroots groups to discuss expanding the country’s urban agriculture.
Venezuela launched Saturday a national conference on urban agriculture, aimed to boost the productivity of small scale crops in major cities like Caracas.

The conference is the first of its kind in Venezuela, and will include government officials and representatives of grassroots organizations. President Nicolas Maduro is also expected to attend.

The president has said improving urban agriculture will support his government’s aim to bolster the broader economy.

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January 31, 2016   Comments Off on Venezuela launchs a national conference on urban agriculture

Why Did Venezuela’s Urban Agriculture Minister Vacate Her Post After Just Two Weeks?

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ort
Emma Ortega was a well respected campesina activist and agronomist (AVN).

The reply is that we believe that she did what she promised to do. Going over the heads of bureaucracy, paperwork, seats, desks, offices, posturing and fawning media types, and she dared to get to work straight away,” reads the piece.

By Rachael Boothroyd Rojas
Venezuela Analysis
Jan 25, 2016

Excerpt:

Grassroots Chavistas have taken to social media to express their discontent after the Urban Agriculture Minister, Emma Ortega, inexplicably left her cabinet position just two weeks after being nominated by Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro.

Last Thursday Maduro revealed on Twitter that he had replaced Ortega – a 62 year old outspoken grassroots activist brought into the president’s inner team in a cabinet shake-up on January 6th.

“I have designated comrade @lorenafreitez as Minister of Urban Agriculture to propel the productive revolution from communities,” he Tweeted.

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January 26, 2016   Comments Off on Why Did Venezuela’s Urban Agriculture Minister Vacate Her Post After Just Two Weeks?

Native Women in Bolivia, Green the Outskirts of the City, Feed Their Families

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Two of the peri-urban agricultural producers of Sucre proudly show one of their greenhouses, which families from 83 poor suburban neighbourhoods have set up in their yards as part of the National Urban and Peri-urban Agriculture Programme. Credit: Franz Chávez/IPS

The initiative has 680 members so far, said Guido Zambrana, a young agronomist who runs the Urban Garden Project.

By Franz Chávez
Inter Press Service
SUCRE, Bolivia, Oct 17 2015 (IPS)

Excerpt:

The lunch we are served is soup made with vegetables grown in their backyard gardens, accompanied by tortillas made with cornmeal mixed with flour from different vegetables. Fresh produce is also grown in greenhouses built throughout the hills of Sucre, 2,760 metres above sea level and 420 km south of La Paz, the country’s political centre.

The women have learned how to grow vegetables and how to improve their family’s food security, Tolaba explained. “We want to reach zero malnutrition,” she said. In Sucre temperatures range between 12 and 25 degrees Celcius. But in the greenhouses, built by the families with support from the government, temperatures climb above 30 degrees.

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October 18, 2015   Comments Off on Native Women in Bolivia, Green the Outskirts of the City, Feed Their Families

Agricultura urbana en manos de mujeres

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Johnny Antesano, a 4-year old Guarani indigenous boy in Choroquepiao, a small village in the Chaco region of Bolivia, helps his mother, Yela Vilera, in their family garden. They and their neighbors started their gardens with assistance from Church World Service, supplementing their corn-based diet with nutritious vegetables and fruits. Photo by Paul Jeffrey.

Las tecnologías ecológicas pueden solucionar el grave problema del costo a los consumidores finales

La Razón (Edición Impresa) / Crispim Moreira
12 de septiembre de 2015

Excerpt:

Al menos 400 mujeres campesinas migrantes de áreas rurales de Bolivia producen alimentos ecológicos en áreas periurbanas para la nutrición de sus familias y el abastecimiento alimentario de miles de hogares en la ciudad de Sucre, como resultado de la cooperación técnica entre autoridades del Estado Plurinacional de Bolivia y la Organización de las Naciones Unidas para la Alimentación y la Agricultura (FAO).

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October 8, 2015   Comments Off on Agricultura urbana en manos de mujeres