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Category — Policy

“Urban farms key to hunger” says keynote speaker at 29th International Horticultural Congress

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Julian Cribb, the former CSIRO scientist and author of the books, Poisoned Planet and The Coming Famine, shared his thoughts at the 29th International Horticultural Congress (IHC) in Brisbane.

4000 delegates from more than 100 countries, the largest horticulture gathering in Australia this year, heard the message

By Ashley Walmsley
The Land
19 Aug, 2014

Excerpt:

“The city itself is poised to change. Green cities alive with vegetation, fresh food, birds and insects will replace the polluted, soulless, concrete and glass urbanscapes of today,” he said.

Giant floating greenhouses and translucent vertical urban farms were just two ideas touted by Mr Cribb. He said by 2050, urban horticulture and farming could provide half the world’s food.

“They will ensure a highly diverse, local food supply that never fails,” Mr Cribb said.

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August 19, 2014   No Comments

Mustang, Oklahoma Family Fighting City Hall Over Vegetable Garden

The Jamesons said the garden has literally saved their lives. It has helped Lyle lose 137 pounds and Jessica lose 120 pounds in less than a year.

By Lacie Lowry
News 9
Aug 15, 2014

Excerpt:

The city sent the Jameson family a notice, explaining it has received several complaints that the vines of cucumber, tomato and gourdes along the fence are obstructing the view of drivers pulling up to the intersection.

“If it slows drivers down, then that’s not the worst thing, because this is a daycare,” said Lyle Jameson. “Children play here all day.”

The city said the Jamesons must remove the vegetation by August 18.

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August 17, 2014   No Comments

Create a world class urban agriculture hub on Bristol’s Blue Finger – Britain

Petition to Mayor of Bristol to Protect Bristol’s highly fertile food growing land from road building and other damaging development.

Petition by
The Blue Finger Alliance
August 2014

Excerpt:

Any city that wishes to thrive in an unpredictable future must act now to upscale sustainable food production in ways that directly benefit the health and wellbeing, and the local economy of that city. We should not be endorsing a public transport system that undermines our ability to do this.

The area under threat is part of an area known as the Blue Finger (Grade 1 is coded blue on agricultural classification maps). Soil of this quality covers less than 3% of the UK and this is set to diminish as sea levels rise and extremes of climate increase.

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August 13, 2014   No Comments

Letter: Friendlier permitting needed for urban agriculture in Encinitas, California

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Coral Tree Farm & Nursery. Family owned and operated urban farm in Encinitas since 1958 offering CSA and open to the public to purchase organic eggs, fruits, and veggies.

I left the City of Encinitas’ first urban agriculture subcommittee meeting feeling frustrated by the city’s position on small farms.

By Anna Young, a Leucadia resident.
Excinitas Advocate
Aug 1, 2014

Excerpt:

There seems to be a giant disconnect between the city’s vision (preserving its agricultural heritage and the environment) and current planning department’s approach. The City Council is in the process of rewriting the framework for urban agriculture. I hope that in the interim the city will allow historic Coral Tree Farm to continue to exist.

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August 12, 2014   No Comments

U.S. Representative: ‘Farmers Markets and Urban Agriculture – Sharing the Bounty

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Rep. Marcia L. Fudge – U.S. Representative from Ohio’s 11th District

By Rep. Marcia L. Fudge
U.S. Representative from Ohio’s 11th District
Huffington Post
Aug 6, 2014

Excerpt:

As a member of the House Committee on Agriculture and Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Department Operations, Oversight and Nutrition, I have been consistently engaged in efforts to promote healthier eating habits and better nutrition for Americans. Since this is National Farmers Market Week, it is a good time to highlight the growth in urban agriculture that is occurring in communities across the country. This week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported a 76 percent increase in the number of farmers markets in the United States, up from 4,685 in 2008 to 8,286 in 2014. Ohio is a leader, ranking fourth in the number of farmers markets with 311, behind California (764), New York (638) and Michigan (339).

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August 7, 2014   Comments Off

Support urban farming in Tallahassee, Florida

claire
Claire Mitchell, urban farmer.

Tell them you support Ten-Speed Greens and that you want urban farm zoning in the city, and that you think unused city and county land should be put into urban agriculture conservation trusts and leased to young and beginning farmers.

By Claire Mitchell
Tallahassee Democrat
July 28, 2014

Excerpt:

If I were to tell you that three quarters of an acre could support the livelihoods of two young women, foster the education of seven farm interns, grow one ton of tomatoes in a summer, and gross $60,000 in 18 months, would you believe me? I hope so, because it’s the truth.

Ten-Speed Greens Urban Farm was a force to be reckoned with, partly because of the novelty of a fully-functioning farm in Levy Park, and partly because of the work and dedication of its owners, myself and Danielle Krasniqi. Then on July 10, our farm closed because of lack of secure land access.

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August 3, 2014   Comments Off

Detroit’s secret weapon against food insecurity

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If other cities experience an economic collapse similar to Detroit’s, the nationwide urban farming infrastructure may grow yet further.

By Ned Resnikoff
MSNBC
07/25/14

There’s still quite a bit of hunger in Detroit, and urban agriculture alone probably won’t relieve it. So far, the produce coming from the city’s urban gardens has done more to supplement other food sources than replace them.

Gleaners Community Food Bank has even started its own community garden, producing between 20,000 and 30,000 pounds of fresh produce per year, but Brisson says he doesn’t expect those efforts to measurably bring down hunger in Detroit.

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August 1, 2014   Comments Off

Indianapolis should favor gardeners in clash over urban farms

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Sue Spicer (above) helps to tend a Near Eastside urban garden. Photo: Kelly Wilkinson / The Star.

Zoning is a tricky thing, but we must strive for a balance. And if we can’t quite achieve that, we should err on the side of the code being too loose rather than too restrictive.

By Erika D. Smith
Indy Star
July 19, 2014

Excerpt:

To Kay and Sue and other gardeners, Fruit Loop Acres is a beautiful labor of love that should be allowed to grow. To others, it’s an ugly mess, a tangle of untamed greenery interspersed with smelly animals, that should be shut down.

Who is right? It’s hard to say, and the city’s laws are largely silent.

[Read more →]

July 30, 2014   Comments Off

Spokane’s Urban farm ordinance will incur costs to city

spoakneSpokane urban farm.

People wanting to keep goats, sheep or small pigs in the city have to be certified through a class by Washington State University’s Spokane County Extension service.

Mike Prager
The Spokesman-Review
July 19, 2014

Excerpt:

Spokane’s new urban farming ordinance that allows for the keeping of small farm animals is likely to cost the city extra money for animal control services.

The director of the Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Service has outlined a series of charges for the extra work of answering farm animal welfare calls and noise and odor complaints involving goats, sheep, small pigs or fowl.

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July 27, 2014   Comments Off

Urban Agriculture in Boston: Permits and Approvals Needed to Start Your Less than One Acre Ground-Level Farm

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Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation – Harvard Law School

Food Law & Policy,
July 17, 2014
(Must see. Mike)

The Food Law and Policy Clinic (FLPC) is excited to announce the publication of its guide, Urban Agriculture in Boston: Permits and Approvals Needed to Start Your Less than One Acre Ground-Level Farm. The guide to establishing ground-level farms smaller than one acre is the first in a series of guides that spell out the processes urban farmers in Boston will need to go through in order to start their operations in the City.

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July 26, 2014   Comments Off

Officials Break Ground on New Urban Farm in City of Boston, Roxbury

There are about 1,400 vacant parcels, not all of which are build-able

By Nate Boroyan
City News Writer
07/12/14

Excerpt:

The Garrison-Trotter Farm will occupy two formerly-vacant lots in Roxbury, becoming the first urban farm on city-owned land, BNN News reports. “[The Garrison-Trotter Farm] stems from the adoption of Article 89, which is a zoning ordinance which makes urban agriculture legal, as of right in the City of Boston,” William Epperson of the Department of Neighborhood Development told BNN news in a tapped interview (see: below).”And the city would like to use some of its vacant parcels to promote urban agriculture to bring healthy foods back to the communities to make it more accessible, and to also create jobs and give opportunities to folks who would like to get into farming.”

[Read more →]

July 22, 2014   Comments Off

1949 commuter train film shows Vancouver corridor land which today is in ‘community gardens versus railway dispute’

1949 film of the Interurban rail service from downtown Vancouver to Marpole and the Fraser River

Vancouver Arbutus Corridor Community Gardens could lose 60-70% of garden land space

City of Richmond Archives
Published on July 21, 2014

This clip shows the B.C.E.R. Lulu Island Line interurban on its run from downtown Vancouver through the Arbutus corridor to Marpole and the Fraser River Trestle. Filmed by tram enthusiast Ted Clark around 1949, the original 16 mm film underwent conservation treatment in 2012 and then was digitized. The complete film on DVD, along with a detailed shot list, can be purchased at the City of Richmond Archives for $20.00.

[Read more →]

July 21, 2014   Comments Off

A new vision for urban farming

wargard1919 War Gardens medallion.

A model where agriculture is reintegrated into urban and suburban areas — and locally produced food is sold and consumed locally.

By Jason Reed and Robert Puro
Daily News
July 7, 2014
Jason Reed, a movie producer formerly with Disney, and Robert Puro are co-founders of Seedstock.com, a Los Angeles-based social venture dedicated to promoting innovation and investment in sustainable and urban agriculture.

Excerpt:

One key to improving the urban farm system is aggregation. It’s easier, and certainly more cost-effective because of its scale, to collect on a daily basis hundreds of boxes of lettuce, truckloads of tomatoes, etc., sort them and then designate their ultimate destination — which is usually another, smaller sorting operation within a city. In the large-scale commercial farming operation, it’s one crop with one fleet of semi trucks from one aggregated source. The aggregation system for urban farming is obviously different — which means it’s riskier for the entrepreneur who wants to create that network.

[Read more →]

July 15, 2014   Comments Off

Tucson City may ditch proposed rules on urban agriculture

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Infographic: Urban Agriculture Proposals in Tucson.

The chorus of opposition has made some council members wonder if the city is looking for a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist.

By Darren DaRonco
Arizona Daily Star
July 1, 2014

Excerpt:

Proposed limits on how many chickens and goats city residents can keep in their backyards may be dumped before they’re ever adopted.

The same goes for new rules governing when you can sell your homegrown fruits and vegetables to your neighbors.

Tucson City Council members are having second thoughts about even bringing the changes to a public vote in the wake of outraged opposition from urban farmers who see their rights being impinged.

[Read more →]

July 13, 2014   Comments Off

Mayor Walsh Proclaims ‘Urban Agriculture Day’ in Boston

bostprocl

To recognize and appreciate those who engage in urban growing of any kind, and acknowledge the role of urban agriculture in supporting our neighborhoods.

Mayor’s Press Office
City of Boston
July 10, 2014

Text of the proclamation:

Whereas

Urban agriculture improves access to fresh, local food within the city limits of Boston, reducing the distance food travels from farm to table, strengthening community, and developing neighborhood and city-wide resiliency; and

Whereas

Urban Agriculture entrepreneurs fortify the human, environmental, and community health of their neighborhoods, all while creating local, sustainable jobs; and

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July 12, 2014   Comments Off