Urban farming in an urbanized world

The global population is moving towards the cities. Feeding those emerging mega-cities will become more and more of a masterpiece. Urban gardening and urban farming could be part of that solution.

Urban gardening is a way to make use of the open spaces in town, rooftops and empty construction sites. And for the citizens a way to be involved in meaningful activities. Volunteers, including partly or -unemployed people, the youth and elderly build a caring community, growing the fruits and vegetables and sharing in the harvest. Meanwhile they are saving on their grocery bills.

Urban farming goes one level further. Urban farms are businesses. They may start small, or with all the characteristics of urban gardens, but they have the intentions to grow into a healhty profitable enterpise. In that way they could tap into the hole of how to feed a mega-city.

Right now, commercial urban farm companies are just taking off. Here in Rotterdam, in the Netherlands, Uit je eigen stad, will have their first harvest fest, or official opening, on 22 september. Other urban farms will follow their example, each in their own way. One more into high tech systems, LED lighting systems as shown by Plant lab, the other low tech community based, such as Spin farming. But what most of them need, is investments for building up scale to become a competitive business and find their place in the food system.

It is yet uncertain how urban farming with grow and become a regular type of business that you will see in cities all over the world. One thing is sure, in the future more citizens in every continent will rely on urban farms for their daily groceries.

Photo credits: Uit je eigen stad


About Freija Van Duijne

Twitter: @FreijavanDuijne Futuring is my passion. I am fascinated about what the future might bring. Always looking around for leads about the future and open for new insights. I am futurist, trendwatchter and strategist at the The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies, a thinktank in the Netherlands. My background is in Human factors psychology. I did my Masters at Leiden University and I did a PhD in Delft University at the faculty of Industrial design engineering. I have been involved in foresight studies since 2006. I am frequently asked as an expert for future studies in area of food, natural resources, health and governance. I am also a speaker and workshop facilitator on futures studies, trend presentations and the many topics that I blog about. My contributions to Futuristablog represent my own personal opinion and is never a statement of the Ministry of Economic Affairs.
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