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Category — Policy

Ghana: Urban Agriculture in Tamale: a policy narrative

The core of the suggested Tamale plan involves municipal assemblies purchasing larger areas of flood prone land and specifically dedicating them to agriculture so that they cannot be reallocated or sold.

For URBANET UrbanFoodPlus RUAF Foundation Ghana WASH Programme University for Development Studies and International Water Management Institute by I. Bellwood-Howard, E. Chimsi, S. Abdul-Ganiyu and R. van Veenhuisen
Institute of Development Studies
Jan 24, 2016

Executive summary:

Tamale, the capital of Ghana’s Northern region, is a fast-growing metropolis situated in the Guinea savannah. It has a tradition of urban and peri-urban cultivation, and its current rapid growth means that there is a need to analyse the role of urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA) in the city’s sustainable development. UPA in and around Tamale takes many forms, with various crop farm types characterised by different spatial and tenure arrangements and access to irrigation facilities. These can be broadly categorised as open space intra-urban sites, open space peri-urban sites, intra-urban backyard farms, isolated farms in interstitial intra-urban spaces, formal peri-urban irrigation schemes and peri-urban non-irrigated farming.

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May 21, 2018   No Comments

New York City GreenThumb urban gardening program celebrates 40th anniversary with tree giveaway

GreenThumb supports more than 550 community gardens with materials and workshops to help them grow.

By Max Parrott
am New York
May 13, 2018

Excerpt:

GreenThumb helps provide them with lumber for raised bed planters, plants and workshops, but the new stewards have also taken advantage of materials, services and grants offered by an array of programs and nonprofits around the city.

Vulcain and Sowkey’s efforts seemed to be paying off. Community members steadily streamed in throughout the morning to pick up their trees.

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May 20, 2018   No Comments

UK: Mayor of London Releases The Draft London Food Strategy

Part 5: Good Food Growing, Community Gardens And Urban Farming – Increasing Sustainable Food Growing

Greater London Authority April 2018
Published by
Greater London Authority City Hall
The Queen’s Walk
More London
London
(Must read. Mike)

Exceprts:

The Mayor will use the new draft London Plan to help local authorities to support food growing networks and community food growing projects.

Aim
Promoting the multiple benefits of food growing for individuals and communities

The importance of food growing in community gardens, allotments, urban farms and other spaces in London cannot be overstated. In addition to the environmental benefits of urban food growing, knowing how food is grown is a key part of building people’s skills. Food growing can bring many benefits to individuals and communities. It can bring communities together, help people make new friends, make areas safer and healthier, and provide training which can lead to employment and improve physical and mental wellbeing.

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May 16, 2018   No Comments

India: Smart Kitchen Garden to promote organic farming in Kerala

Link.

The plan is to encourage more and more people to cultivate pesticide free, nutritious and healthy food on their rooftop by setting a Smart Kitchen Garden.

The New India Express
May 11, 2018

Excerpt:

KOCHI: Teaming up with the government to promote organic farming in the state, the Vegetable and Fruits’ Promotion Council Keralam (VFPCK) has come up with ‘Grow Your Own Food’ (GYOF) initiative The plan is to encourage more and more people to cultivate pesticide free, nutritious and healthy food on their rooftop by setting a Smart Kitchen Garden.

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May 16, 2018   No Comments

GOP lawmakers question tax implications of creating urban agriculture zones

HB3418 was introduced by sponsor Rep. Sonya Harper (D-Chicago)

Is creating an urban agriculture zone (UAZ) just a way to get another tax break?

By Angela Underwood
Du Page Policy
May 7, 2018

Excerpt:

After being told by Harper there would be no cost to the Department of Agriculture to implement the new plan, Rep. Peter Breen (R-Lombard) said that could be untrue since the program adds additional rules and regulations that must be reviewed.

Property tax respite was his next concern. He asked Harper if having a UAZ offered relief from either state or local taxes. Harper said it was just municipal tax relief, to which Breen expressed concern.

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May 13, 2018   No Comments

Fairbanks, Alaska planning commission to discuss urban farms

Ordinance 2018-12 has been more than a year in the making after residents increasingly were contacting the Fairbanks North Star Borough Department of Community Planning asking how many chickens they were allowed to have.

By Amanda Bohman
Newsminer
May 7, 2018 a

Excerpt:

The ordinance creates two land uses, “urban livestock” and “market garden.” It details the types and numbers of livestock allowed based on lot size.

Currently, chickens are not allowed to be kept in most city neighborhoods.

The measure also provides the ability for home gardeners to sell their produce.

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May 13, 2018   No Comments

No Farms, No Food, No Future: American Farmland Trust Releases New Report On The Loss Of Farmland

Between 1992 and 2012, almost 31 million acres of farmland were lost, equal to all the farmland in Iowa. Expanding urban areas accounted for 59 percent of the loss.

American Farmland Trust
May 9, 2018
(Must see. Mike)

Washington, DC – Today, American Farmland Trust releases the most comprehensive assessment ever undertaken of the loss of U.S. farmland and ranchland. “Farms Under Threat: The State of America’s Farmland” sounds a stark warning: The loss of farmland is serious and will accelerate unless we take action. Among the report’s key findings:

• Between 1992 and 2012, almost 31 million acres of farmland were lost, equal to all the farmland in Iowa,
• Nearly twice the area of farmland was lost than was previously shown,
• 11 million of those acres were among the best farmland in the nation,
• Development disproportionately occurred on agricultural lands, with 62 percent of all development occurring on farmland, and
• Expanding urban areas accounted for 59 percent of the loss. Low-density residential development, or the building of houses on 1-to-20-acre parcels, accounted for 41 percent.

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May 9, 2018   Comments Off on No Farms, No Food, No Future: American Farmland Trust Releases New Report On The Loss Of Farmland

Urban Farm Tax Credit Plan Gets Illinois House Approval

City Farm vegetable garden and the Chicago skyline. Piush Dahal Via Flickr.

The Illinois House has voted to allow tax breaks for those who take vacant land and use it for urban farming. The aim is to give an economic boost to the state’s low-income areas.

By Sam Dunklau
NPR Illinois
Apr 30, 2018

Excerpt:

The idea comes from state Representative Sonya Harper, a Democrat from Chicago. She explained during the debate that the people she represents on the south and west sides of the city live in food deserts. That means they don’t have easy access to fresh food.

But what those neighborhoods do have is vacant land.

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May 6, 2018   Comments Off on Urban Farm Tax Credit Plan Gets Illinois House Approval

Mayor Boosts Urban Farming to Oakland Students

Celebrity cook Ayesha Curry was also there to promote urban farms

East Bay
Apr 24, 2018

Excerpt:

Celebrity cook Ayesha Curry and the Mayor of Oakland were joined by students of the Oakland Unified School District at the Oakland Whole Foods Market on Tuesday to have a cook off to promote healthy eating and urban farming.

The day started with a gardening workshop where students were taught about the science of photosynthesis and how to plant their own gardens by Back to the Roots — an Oakland-based startup that aims to reconnect communities with farming with its organic indoor gardening kits.

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April 30, 2018   Comments Off on Mayor Boosts Urban Farming to Oakland Students

Green shoots of hope: the Chelsea Flower Show garden celebrating the ingenuity of Syrian refugees


(Must see video. Mike) Film: Urban Agriculture in Domiz Camp, Iraq. In 2017 we met Castro Youssef, a refugee film maker in Domiz camp. We purchased him a video camera to document our work and record the everyday life of refugees. Through his work we have been able to prepare a short film about Domiz Camp in Iraq which explores the home gardens, liberation garden, and Crisis Response Garden kits.

“Imagine having the presence of mind when you’re having to flee ­conflict to take seeds of your ­favourite rose with you,” marvels Massey.

By Annie Gatti
The Telegraph
April 27, 2018
(Must see. Mike)

Chelsea Flower Show designers who are ­creating gardens for charities or other not-for-profit organisations usually have several months to immerse themselves in the sponsor’s world before submitting their initial design.

Tom Massey, who is making his Chelsea debut with a Main Avenue garden for Lemon Tree Trust, had just a couple of weeks to come up with a plan before the RHS deadline.

The trust, a US and UK-based group working to create ­pilot projects in urban agriculture and green spaces among displaced communities, gave him an open brief: they wanted a garden that would celebrate the ­resilience and ingenuity of refugees living and making gardens in the harsh conditions of Domiz Camp in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq, where summer temperatures soar above 40C and drop below freezing in winter, and where the trust has been providing horticultural support since 2015.

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April 28, 2018   Comments Off on Green shoots of hope: the Chelsea Flower Show garden celebrating the ingenuity of Syrian refugees

Canada: Would-be urban farmers peeved by provincial building code regulations in Edmonton

Mike Day, left, and Andy Day, right, hope city council will make it easier for urban farmers to use shipping containers to grow produce. (KEVIN TUONG)

Report by city administration says all structures larger than 10 square metres must measure up

By Ameya Charnalia
StarMetro Edmonton
April 17, 2018

Excerpt:

Some urban farmers say stringent provincial building codes are hampering their plans to farm in the city.

Ryan Mason, co-owner of Reclaim Urban Farms, is asking councillors to help residents navigate provincial red tape for erecting temporary structures on urban agricultural land.

“I just want to sell lettuce to restaurants,” said Mason, whose Garneau-area hoop house was considered non-compliant and shut down because he didn’t have a building permit.

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April 27, 2018   Comments Off on Canada: Would-be urban farmers peeved by provincial building code regulations in Edmonton

Malaysia aims to double its urban farming communities to 20,000 by 2020

Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek.

“It can be done when people take advantage of small plots of land at their homes.”

By Seri Nor Nadiah Koris And Hidayatul Akmal Ahmad
New Straits Times
April 22, 2018

Excerpt:

Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek said to date there are around 11,000 urban farming communities around the country.

“Urban farming is a government initiative programme to ensure a complete food supply chain and beef up food security in the country,” he said after launching the ‘Program Sentuhan Kasih Tani-Pertanian Bandar 2.0.’

He said the urban farming concept would give good impact to everyone as they get to have continuous supplies for their own basic needs such as chilies, lemon, lemongrass and others.

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April 27, 2018   Comments Off on Malaysia aims to double its urban farming communities to 20,000 by 2020

How African cities lead: Urban policy innovation and agriculture in Kampala and Nairobi

Francis Ndolo on his farm in Landless estate, Kiambu County. He makes a huge income from urban farming. (Photo:James Wanzala/Standard) See here.

While advocacy for urban agriculture is common globally, what is not clear is under what conditions local advocacy produces policy uptake and change.

By Christopher D. Gore
Science Direct
13 April 2018

Abstract:

City governments in sub-Saharan Africa have historically been beholden to national governments. Lack of national urban policies and tensions between national and city governments are common. Yet, for decades, research has identified small-scale innovations at the urban scale. Rarely, however, are policy innovations in African cities so influential as to lead national governments to scale up city based actions. This is particularly true in sectors that have been the dominant purview of central governments. This paper examines how citizens, civil society organizations, city governments and national bureaucrats in two cities of East Africa – Kampala and Nairobi – have interacted to produce policy innovation in agriculture.

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April 23, 2018   Comments Off on How African cities lead: Urban policy innovation and agriculture in Kampala and Nairobi

Philippines: Davao City agri to refurbish rooftop garden

DAVAO. In a bid to make it into an ideal agri-tourism destination, the City Agriculture’s Office is set to refurbish the rooftop garden at the City Hall Annex Building along Pichon St. (SunStar file photo)

“We cannot just tell everybody to have an organic urban garden at home when we don’t have it here. That’s why we have this model garden to show them that it’s doable even with limited space,” he added.

By Jennie P. Arado
SunStar
Apr 13, 2018

Excerpt:

The 250-square meter (sqm) roof deck garden, located on the roof deck of the City Agriculture’s Office building along Pichon St., was first launched December of 2016. During the launching, invited guests saw the different organic vegetables, herbs, and spices grown in the garden.

During an interview with CAO head Leo Brian Leuterio, they target the refurbished rooftop garden to look like a homestead. Within the 250-sqm total area of the rooftop garden, they are going to allot a 50-sqm space intended for a specialized homestead, which Leuterio said will hopefully create the impression to the visitors that urban gardening is doable and that space is not a limitation to do gardening.

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April 21, 2018   Comments Off on Philippines: Davao City agri to refurbish rooftop garden

Singapore stakes claim on first organic standard for produce grown by urban and indoor farming

With increasing demand for authentic organic primary produce, SS 632: 2017 was developed to aid industry players in the sector as well as consumers.

“I am proud to say that this is possibly the first national standard in the world for organic produce in the urban and peri-urban environments.”

By Lester Wan
Food Navigator Asia
12-Apr-2018

Excerpt:

According to the SSC, SS 632: 2017 was tailored to local Singaporean conditions yet encompasses the principles of organic agriculture: health, ecology, fairness and care.

It pertains to traditional organic farming, peri-urban and urban organic farming, as well as the distribution and trade of organic produce.

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April 18, 2018   Comments Off on Singapore stakes claim on first organic standard for produce grown by urban and indoor farming