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

Category — Policy

USDA Unveils New ‘Urban Agriculture Toolkit’ for Urban Farmers and Agri-business Entrepreneurs

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

know

Online Resource Draws on USDA’s and Partners’ Experience with Launching and Sustaining Urban Agriculture Operations Points Producers to Helpful Financial and Technical Resources

USDA
April 29, 2016

WASHINGTON, April 29, 2016 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today unveiled the USDA Urban Agriculture Toolkit, a new resource created by USDA’s Know Your Farmer team to help entrepreneurs and community leaders successfully create jobs and increase access to healthy food through urban agriculture. From neighborhood gardens grown on repurposed lots, to innovative mobile markets and intensive hydroponic and aquaculture operations, urban food production is rapidly growing into a mature business sector in cities across the country.

“Urban agriculture helps strengthen the health and social fabric of communities while creating economic opportunities for farmers and neighborhoods,” Vilsack said. “USDA’s Urban Agriculture Toolkit compiles guidance from our Know Your Farmer team and many private partners into one comprehensive resource to help small-scale producers manage all aspects of their business. From protecting soil health to marketing to schools and grocery store chains, USDA has tools to meet the needs of this new breed of innovative urban farmer and small business owner.”

[Read more →]

April 29, 2016   No Comments

Indonesia: Peri-urban agriculture in Jabodetabek Metropolitan Area and its relationship with the urban socioeconomic system

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

insCitizen watering vegetables that planted on vacant land in the residential area in East Jakarta. Agriculture is crucial to Indonesian economic development so that discussing farmers is highly relevant as 39.96 million people. 35 percent of the total workforce — work in the agricultural sector.

Peri-urban agriculture (PUA) in the surroundings of Jakarta as well as in the East and Northeast of JMA has contributed to increasing food affordability as well as strengthening food security policy.

By Didit Okta Pribadi, Stephan Pauleit
Land Use Policy
Volume 55, September 2016, Pages 265–274

Abstract:

Peri-urban agriculture (PUA) has been proposed as an important urban element to deal with the challenges of increasing poverty, food insecurity, and environmental degradation as particularly found in rapidly expanding cities of the developing world. However, farming in the peri-urban is under strong pressure from urbanization. The economic and social roles of farming need to be better understood in order to integrate peri-urban agriculture into urban planning. This study used multivariate techniques and Geographically Weighted Regression to analyze statistical data at a village and sub-district, to explore the varying relationships between agricultural activities and urban economic activities, urban poverty and informality, as well as food security. This method was applied in the Jabodetabek Metropolitan Area (JMA) with Indonesia’s capital Jakarta at its core, and it resulted in some important findings.

[Read more →]

April 28, 2016   No Comments

An Urban Grower’s Guide: Selling the Food You Grow in Pittsburgh

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

pit

The goal of the guide is to encourage city residents to grow and sell produce by providing resources that explain the relevant rules and regulations.

By Grow Pittsburgh, Penn State Extension, and Pittsburgh Food Policy Council
April 2016

Excerpt:

Writing a Business Plan

Writing a business plan can be a long process, but these resources will help you out:

Penn State Extension provides many resources from an agriculture perspective. Visit the Creating a Business Plan page, or Start Farming, which is a comprehensive resource hub that covers the entire scope of production, business and state/federal regulations for those new to growing for profit.

[Read more →]

April 26, 2016   No Comments

Korea helps urban dwellers start small rural farms

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

farmgame
President Park Geun-hye listens to a developer of a mobile farming game during the 2015 A Farm Show in Seoul. (Yonhap file photo)

A unique exposition designed to help urban dwellers relocate to rural areas to start small farms will kick off in Seoul next week under the sponsorship of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs and Yonhap News Agency, South Korea’s key news service, organizers said Thursday.

By Kang Yoon-seung
Yon hap News
Apr 21, 2016

The organizers say the expo will be helpful to urban residents who are dreaming of leading a slow and peaceful life instead of being chased by hectic urban routines.

In 2014, the number of South Korean households escaping urban areas to start an agricultural career came to 44,586, up 37.5 percent from a year earlier. Although the official data is not yet available, experts said the figure is estimated to have hovered above 50,000 in 2015, which is more than a 10-fold growth from 4,067 posted in 2010.

[Read more →]

April 25, 2016   No Comments

Canada: Ottawa’s urban farmers cross the fowl line, as hobby comes home to roost

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

outlKeeping backyard chickens is against the law in Canada’s capital city. Photo by Bruce Deachman.

McGregor thinks the city should amend By-law 2003-77 to allow backyard hens, joining Vancouver, Victoria, Kingston, Red Deer, Montreal, Saint John, Moncton, Fredericton, Cornerbrook, Brampton, Guelph and numerous other Canadian municipalities that permit backyard chickens.

By Bruce Deachman
Ottawa Citizen
Apr 16, 2016

Excerpt:

She first got the idea more than a decade ago when she and her husband toured an off-the-grid house where the owners kept chickens. “They were all what I’d call funky chickens — heritage breeds — and after that I decided I wanted chickens.”

They made the leap four years ago, when they attended a bird auction and paid about $20 each for two hens: a Barred Rock and a Polish hen — Polly — the latter most notable for its showy crest of feathers.

[Read more →]

April 20, 2016   No Comments

Empty soccer field in Thunder Bay, Ontario, being turned into urban agricultural site

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

thubde
The City, along with Roots to Harvest, unveiled a new program and site plan lastnight that will transform the former soccer fields adjacent to Volunteer Pool into a productive urban agriculture site.

“This partnership with Roots to Harvest is a great opportunity to explore how urban parks can become more productive environments,” said Werner Schwar, the city’s supervistor of parks and open-space planning.

By Leith Dunick
NewsWatch
April 12, 2016

Excerpt:

The goal of the project, to be paid for with more than $300,000 supplied by several different organizations, is to provide a place for young adults to learn about leadership and employment skills in a variety of ways, including bee keeping, gardening and raising rabbits.

“Nothing instills a strong work ethic in young people better than agricultural work,” said Julie Rosenthal, a former farmer from Murillo and now the lead facilitator with Roots to Harvest, who has partnered with the City of Thunder Bay to launch the ambitious project.

[Read more →]

April 16, 2016   Comments Off on Empty soccer field in Thunder Bay, Ontario, being turned into urban agricultural site

Urban garden plan takes root in London, Ontario

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

londt

The committee approved the motion that now will now go to council. It calls for a staff report on how the city can aid community groups on using private land for urban agriculture.

By Norman DeBono
The London Free Press
April 11, 2016

Excerpt:

The city just may get into the gardening business.

A proposal from Coun. Michael van Holst for the city to aid a community group in urban agriculture received a warm reception Monday at a planning and environment committee meeting.

[Read more →]

April 16, 2016   Comments Off on Urban garden plan takes root in London, Ontario

The executive director of the Vancouver Urban Farming Society talks about this emerging sector

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

marcMarcela Crowe, at an urban farm at 57th and Cambie, said the Vancouver Urban Farming Society’s mandate is to grow the sector through education, advocacy, business support and networking. Photo Dan Toulgoet.

On the Record with Marcela Crowe: In 2013, urban farmers sold about $418,000 worth of produce to residents.

By Naoibh O’Connor
Vancouver Courier
April 12, 2016

Excerpt:

What does urban farming look like in Vancouver right now?
The data needs to be updated. We don’t have any data for 2016 or even 2015. But we do have data from 2013. That was the last time a large census of urban farms in Vancouver took place. This will have changed, but there are approximately 14 urban farms in Vancouver. The largest one [Sole Food Street Farms] has about four acres of land. [That goes] all the way to maybe a handful of backyard farms totalling 5,000 square feet. There’s really that variety in terms of scale. In 2013, urban farmers sold about $418,000 worth of produce to residents. The farms are located throughout the city. They’re in the Downtown Eastside, they’re in Mount Pleasant, they’re in the east end and they’re in the West Side, Kitsilano area.

[Read more →]

April 13, 2016   Comments Off on The executive director of the Vancouver Urban Farming Society talks about this emerging sector

LA County to Give Tax Relief for Urban Farmers

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

lagardfe

When adopted, it will clear the way for any of the 88 cities within Los Angeles County to adopt similar ordinances.

By Paige Austin
The Patch
April 5, 2016

Excerpts:

The Board of Supervisors voted today to offer tax relief to urban farmers, in a bid to get more healthy food into communities often characterized as “food deserts.”

Regional planners proposed reducing property taxes by up to $15,000 for owners who convert urban lots to agricultural use in unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County.

[Read more →]

April 12, 2016   Comments Off on LA County to Give Tax Relief for Urban Farmers

New Port Richey, Florida, council okays urban agriculture ordinance

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

potrr
New Port Richey residents Sylvia Spencer, 41, and her son, Houston, 13, plant broccoli and kale seedlings in their plot at Grand Gardens in New Port Richey. Photo Michelle Miller.

The new ordinance takes it a step further by permitting the sale of produce from local gardens that are established in residential, commercial and industrial zones.

By Robert Napper,
Tampa Bay Times
April 6, 2016

Excerpt:

The sale of produce in residential areas, however, would have some restrictions, including only being able to hold sales once every six months from a particular location. The “garage sales” would require a permit that would expire after 72 hours.

The ordinance also mandates that indoor growing operations could only be conducted in light industrial areas in the city. Urban agriculture would not be allowed in mobile home parks, and the raising of livestock would be banned throughout the city.

[Read more →]

April 12, 2016   Comments Off on New Port Richey, Florida, council okays urban agriculture ordinance

Confronting the Dark Side of Urban Agriculture

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

francFrancois Manchebo.

All urban agricultures are not sustainable, and some may even produce deleterious effects on the city inhabitants as well as on the city itself.

By François Mancebo, PhD,
Director of the IRCS and IATEUR, is professor of urban planning and sustainability at Rheims university. He lives in Paris.
The Nature of Cities
April 8, 2016

Excerpt:

Get back to the ground level: conventional farming within cities is potentially a much graver concern, be it located in a skyscraper or just in the ground. The big issue here is the dissemination of pesticides and fertilizers as well as of the wastes and the by-products of industrial urban agriculture, especially in vine-growing or grain-growing regions—two agricultural productions with high added-value—where vines and fields are frequently incorporated in the city. The inhabitants of such cities are exposed to critical levels of pesticides on a daily basis without them even knowing. Well, they are beginning to know, and it appears that they are not happy at all.

[Read more →]

April 9, 2016   Comments Off on Confronting the Dark Side of Urban Agriculture

100 square foot urban farming plots coming to Knoxville, Tennessee

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

knoxz
Left to right, Daniel Aisenbrey, farm manager and Brenna Wright, founder of Abbey Fields Farm with PetSafe Chairman Randy Boyd and wife Jenny Boyd, and Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero, gather to make an announcement about the Old City Gardens. For a yearly subscription fee of $100, residents will be able to rent one of 30 4-by-25-foot raised beds for growing vegetables or flowers. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS /NEWS SENTINEL)

He said he was inspired by the Fenway Victory Gardens, a city park in Boston with about 500 plots for lease to local gardeners.

By Megan Boehnke
Knoxville News Sentinel
April 1, 2016

Excerpt:

State economic director and local businessman Randy Boyd has joined with urban farmer Brenna Wright to turn a vacant lot into the Old City Gardens.

Thirty raised beds will be available for lease at $100 apiece annually. The other half of the lot at 300 E. Depot Avenue will be a for-profit plot run by Abbey Fields Farm, which will sell produce to downtown restaurants.

[Read more →]

April 8, 2016   Comments Off on 100 square foot urban farming plots coming to Knoxville, Tennessee

Black farmers in Detroit are growing their own food. But they’re having trouble owning the land.

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

blpo
A mural on Vernor Hwy. in Detroit, Michigan. The city’s poorest neighborhoods have ready access to fast food, but lack fresh produce and healthy eating options. Credit: Cybelle Codish.

“If we want to increase the quality of life for black people, we need land to do that,” Yakini says. “We have gone backwards — black-owned land has decreased significantly since its peak in 1910.”

By Martina Guzmán
PRI’s The World
March 30, 2016

Excerpt:

Lorenzo Herron is a 26-year-old Detroit native and urban farmer. His degree in agribusiness from Michigan State University brought him back to Detroit in 2012, where he began growing cherries, raspberries, strawberries and mulberries on the city’s east side.

“Growing fruit is the least amount of work,” he says. “You don’t have to baby fruit; most crops need a lot of pampering and are super-needy.”

[Read more →]

April 5, 2016   Comments Off on Black farmers in Detroit are growing their own food. But they’re having trouble owning the land.

Minnesota Bills Would Provide Money for Urban Agriculture Programs

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

The second bill will provide $3 million to establish the East Phillips indoor urban farm, which would utilize a portion of an existing building and transform it into a year-round urban farm.

By Cleo Greene
KSTP
03/30/2016

Excerpt:

Proposals at the state legislature would provide money for urban agriculture programs in Minnesota.

Rep. Karen Clark (DFL-Minneapolis) on Tuesday discussed two bills to address the food justice crisis in Minnesota. The bills have been introduced before; Clark is working to get support from lawmakers for urban farming.

[Read more →]

April 4, 2016   Comments Off on Minnesota Bills Would Provide Money for Urban Agriculture Programs

India: Man Held for Rooftop Ganja Farming

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

indiapot
The ganja plants found on Nissar’s rooftop; (Inset) Nissan.

The ‘City Shadow Police’ nabbed grower

By New India Express News Service
28th March 2016

Excerpt:

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A 31-year-old man who gave a shady twist to rooftop farming by growing ganja plants on the terrace of his house has been nabbed by the City Shadow police.

The Pettah police identified the man as Nissar, s/o Ali Akbar, Pulikkal Puthenveetil, Anayara. Nissar was trapped by the police during raids conducted as part of ganja raids in the city. The police also recovered a country-made rifle and country bombs from his residence. According to the police, the ganja plants were hidden among wild balsams on the rooftop.

[Read more →]

April 3, 2016   Comments Off on India: Man Held for Rooftop Ganja Farming