Monday, February 22, 2010

Farm City

I'm currently reading Farm City, The Education of an Urban Farmer by Novella Carpenter and I have to say it's making me want a pig. And also grow a lot of food without having to leave Brooklyn. I really appreciate the helpful hints Novella gives, in case I ever do get a pig, and I also love how funny and unpretentious she is. There is tons of great info in the book, but what I find particularly pertinent info to share is that cities can really change themselves to being self-sustaining. Did you know that in Shanghai they grow 85% of their own produce? Wow! In Polish cities, over 25% of families raise their own food and in Dar es Salaam, a city in Tanzania, the government encourages the cultivation of every piece of open land. Other cities active in urban agriculture are Cuba, Caracas, Tokyo, and of course many US cities. So it's not just idealist hippies growing food or the latest trend, but whole cities, hungry for food independence and accessibility.

What we need to get urban farming really taking off in NYC is a little leadership and support
(cheaper land could help too). One leader who has made urban farming a key issue for him is Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer. Check out his vision of a sustainable and bountiful NYC. FoodNYC: A Blueprint for a Sustainable Food System

Here are some inspiring photos of urban farms all over the world. Many of the photos are from a cool blog called

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