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Cities Regain Food Consciousness

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Resurgent phoenix
Resurgent phoenix  
4/23/2013 5:41:57 PM
User Rank City Slicker
A Victory Garden
During World War II many people had victory gardens to supplement rations. I like to grow food in my yard.  When I am busy I always have tomatoe and collards plants.  It is soo enjoyable to come home from work and pick some greens and tomatoes for dinner.  I like spearmint in pots in the house and outside...When you make tea with fresh leaves you get a full bodied drink...you can really taste the oils.  The roof top garden was like a dream it is so beautiful and savvy!  Thanks for the post!

DistilledWisdom
DistilledWisdom  
4/22/2013 8:09:32 PM
User Rank Village Voice
Urban food helps in two ways
Thanks for the great discussion everyone.

I think the benefits of urban food are twofold: urban farms can go some way to making a city self-sufficient in some types of food - the Vancouver example I wrote about is a small greenhouse that is meeting the needs of a part of the population of Vancouver. It would be interesting to calculate how much rooftop/spare land would be required to supply all of a city's needs for, say, green leafy vegetables. Assuming the number is not out of this world, I could imagine a time when planning policiies had a requirement for such space built in. 

Equally importantly, though, is the way that growing one's own produce - even if it is simply  growing basil as Mary does - reconnects people with food, the idea of freshness, and its origins. I love running my hand through my herbs and breathing in the lovely scents. This is good for me, even when I am not eating them.

And I'm sure my oregano likes me talking to it.

Nicole Ferraro
Nicole Ferraro  
4/22/2013 5:32:41 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: Love this
Davedgreat: Sounds like a great idea. We will get on that! And too true about the FDA and lobbyists. Of course, to be fair, the FDA is not alone in doing all the wrong things for consumers in favor of taking money from lobbyists. 

Davedgreat2000
Davedgreat2000  
4/22/2013 5:29:34 PM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: Love this
Nicole, Andrew,

I think we need an article on GMO foods and some of the dangers of the chemicals that are currently in our foods. I buy Organic when I can, the brand I buy says they are free from 101 Chemicals...thats scary to think that we have over 101 chemicals in our foods. Look up Simple Truths by Kroger. They have a list of the 101 chemicals they took out of their foods.

Also everyday processed foods and sodas, whats in them? Lets get more information on them out to the people so we can all  make better more informed purchases of foods for our selves and our families.

Growing your own is great if you have room for it.

Nicole, i have crossed out food from my normally eaten foods list because of whats in them. If the FDA was doing there job instead of taking money from lobbyists and chemical companies we may be in a better place with our food supply and a lot healthier too boot

Nicole Ferraro
Nicole Ferraro  
4/22/2013 5:15:20 PM
User Rank Staff
Love this
Hi Andrew. I love this topic. When I look around cities now, I see so much space that could be put to much better use for purposes like urban farms. Rooftops are just a start. In my previous apartment, I had a garden, which I used to grow basil and flowers. I tried tomatoes once and failed. (Only one made it to red status and was immediately snatched by a squirrel!) I don't have outdoor space anymore, but I would love to join a community farm of some sort. This is a very therapeutic way to spend one's time, a great way to bond with nature, and an excellent way to get a better understanding of what we're putting into our bodies.

Of course, for me, learning more about where my food comes from has caused me to cross many, many, many things off my list over the years. Awareness has its pain points!

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
4/22/2013 2:41:14 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: Slow Eating Not Slow Growing
Have to admit I'm not growing my own vegetables. But that said, I'm buying organic regularly and locally grown wherever possible. In the late summer, a local farmer opens up a produce stand that lands well into the fall, and I get almost all of my vegetables there -- which are both organic and locally grown.

Davedgreat2000
Davedgreat2000  
4/22/2013 2:32:54 PM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: Slow Eating Not Slow Growing
Right now we buy mostly organic and for the most part Locally grown. We are planning our window planting now for Herbs. We tried last summer but it just didnt work out right. So we are trying again...LOL

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
4/22/2013 2:25:04 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: Slow Eating Not Slow Growing
Growing ones own greens can give you a new perspective on what can be available to eat. If I have basil in a window pot, it's a lot more likely that I'll be inspired to use it in a sauce, for instance. So growing good food leads to eating good food, IMO.

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
4/22/2013 2:23:08 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: Slow Eating Not Slow Growing
Good point, Rich. A surprising number of city folk, particularly young people who haven't been outside the city, are pretty ignorant about the way farms work.

Susan Leach
Susan Leach  
4/22/2013 11:39:50 AM
User Rank Blogger
So much more to growing food than just food
Thanks for a great blog, Andrew.

Creating a closer relationship with our food supply has so many benefits beyond simply better diet and health. There's the meditative aspect, the nurturing, the joy of seeing things grow, the pleasure of eating home-grown or locally grown food. And even though the economics might not seem competitive at first glance, human ingenuity has a way of making things work well when the incentive is right. 

I also remember visiting a urban plot for city kids in Cinncinnati. The children came each week to check on their plants and learn how to care for them and garden. They were so thrilled to see the development. That's the next generation....

 

 

 

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