Urban or city agriculture / farming refers to any form of agriculture (excluding gardening) practiced within cities. It may or may not be organic, but most instances of urban farming can at the least be classified as ‘sustainable’.
In India, most urban farming is carried out on private land for private consumption. The trend worldwide is however different. Public as well as private land is used, and produce is mostly sold in nearby markets. While the idea does not seem special or unique, especially for those already practicing roof-top or kitchen gardening, the significance of urban farming has been recognised as a sustainable and desirable practice worldwide for various reasons.
Besides producing food, urban farming is also job- and income-generating and enables food safety and food security for its growers as well as consumers. In addition, consumers receive fresh and quality produce on a regular basis, usually perishables like fruits and vegetables. Since the produce does not require long-distance transportation, it is also energy-saving. In countries such as Cuba, urban farming has not just been a success, but is also extremely important for both food security in the city as well as in providing employment.
The importance and requirement for urban agriculture will only grow over the coming years as transportation costs and distances keep increasing. With the corresponding increase in produce age, food quality will also steadily reduce. The only requirement for urban agriculture to succeed in India is freeing up land that can be used for cultivation.
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