'urban farming' on Serious Eats

Video: Meet 3 Different NY Farmers

These three different stories present a pretty diverse and spectacular picture of farming life—and it's New York through and through. These three farmers grow in and around New York City, and explain how the relationship to the city affects their farming. Hear from Annie Novak from Eagle Street Rooftop Farm in Greenpoint, Abu Talib from Taqwa Community Farm in the Bronx, and Jack Algiere from the Stone Barns Center, located just 25 miles north of Manhattan in Pocantico Hills. More

The Urban Farming Debate

Two of the biggest environmental concerns these days are climate change and sustainable food production. Urban farming has been touted as a solution to both problems. Small-scale agricultural operations have taken root across the country's metropolises, particularly on roofs and in other under-utilized city space. These farms could decrease carbon dioxide levels in the air, lower heating and cooling costs for buildings, and increase access to fresh food for city residents. More

Meet & Eat: Taja Sevelle, Executive Director of Urban Farming in Detroit

Solving issues of food security and environmental deterioration is tough work. Internationally active organizations like Urban Farming seek to tackle these issues through advocating for lively agricultural development in the heart of America's most populated cities. Since 2005, this group has been expanding their operations, from planting small community gardens to building edible walls. I spoke with Taja Sevelle, executive director and founder of Urban Farming, about how she got to where she is and how we can all start urban gardens of our own. More

Urban Farming: Mars, Antarctica Provide Inspiration for Brooklyn Rooftop Gardens

Jennifer Nelkin believes that the future of high-end, boutique-quality farming is not in California, sunny Florida, or even the fertile soils of the Hudson Valley. It's right under our noses. Or more accurately, right above our noses. As co-founder of Gotham Greens, New York's first commercial rooftop hydroponics operation, Jenn's got a lot riding on that future. "I really hope that rooftop gardening is a successful venture, because we've borrowed $1.4 million to try and find out." More

Serious Green: A Guide to Keeping City Chickens

[Photograph: Lisa Moussalli] This is my theory. You and all your foodie friends, the New York Times' Dining section, and the Washington Post's Home and Garden section can all call something a new food trend. Slate can even call it a bogus trend. But it's when a food trend lands on the front page of the business section that it's really gone mainstream. The chickens have landed in our backyards and they're here to stay. Everyone's got a reason for you to rush out to get some of these feathered friends for your own backyard: fresher free-range eggs, being closer to the source of your food, a sense of self-reliance, and free nitrogen-rich fertilizer. These are all legitimate answers,... More

The Bloody Truth About Raising City Chickens

The City Chicken Urban farming has become an urban farming movement. The New York Times ran a piece about the expanding world of urban farming, which is taking root in abandoned lots, backyards, deserted factories, and schoolyards from Detroit to West Oakland. The article focused on growing vegetables, such as young spinach and tomatoes. But many of these hip, young, smart revolutionary farmers tend not only basil and marigolds, but also our feathery friends. Slate contributor L.E. Leone shares her experiences with urban chicken farming and points to a pathological avoidance of talking about blood, even on sites like thecitychicken.com. Workshops and classes on chicken farming often omit instruction and discussion about the grand finale: the slaughter. The modern, expected... More

Who Wants to Raise City Chickens With Me?

All right, all you city slickers. It's time to stop jabbering about local and sustainable food. After reading the New York Times story about urban chicken raising (I don't think raising three chickens on a fire escape qualifies as farming), it's time for all of us to put our money where our mouths are by eating eggs and even chicken we've raised in our apartments. How do we go about this seemingly insane task? Don't worry. We're not going to go it alone like Manny Howard seemed to have done in New York magazine. Plus, he's got a backyard. I have a back window with no ledge. We're going to get help from many sources.... More

Support For Urban Farming Grows

Aid organizations such as UNICEF, the World Food Program, and the Food and Agriculture Organization are increasing their support for urban farming programs. For the first time, global population estimates this year show that more people live in cities than in rural areas. By 2020, according to the international Resource Centre for Urban Agriculture and Forestry, some 75 percent of the world's city dwellers will live in developing countries – many of them in poverty. Already in parts of sub-Saharan Africa, according to the UN, almost three-quarters of city residents live in rapidly growing slums. These trends present a huge challenge when it comes to food and nutrition. Bringing rural-grown produce to people living in infrastructure-poor cities is difficult. In... More

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