Reading the newspaper El Pais this morning, I was surprised and duly impressed by an article on the importance of the “Huerto Urbano” (Urban Farm) in countering the current economic crisis in Spain.
With seven billion mouths to feed, human agriculture exerts a tremendous toll on the planet, from pollution to land degradation, international price volatility on staple foods, and from energy use to habitat loss. However, there are ways to counteract this trend that are becoming more widespread and have inspired thousands to grow their own veg.
More people around the world are taking a look at urban farming, which provides a way to make our food as local as possible. By growing what we need near where we live, we decrease the food miles associated with long-distance transportation. We also get the freshest produce possible and we are encouraged to eat in season, which, for those of you who have tried a real tomato, is one of the biggest pleasures on earth.
Urban farming also has the great benefit that it can add greenery to cities (which in the case of Barcelona, concrete jungle par excellence, is fantastic!) as well as clean the polluted air. Garden plots can help people reconnect with the Earth, and gain a greater appreciation for where our food comes from.
Let this be the beginning of a beautiful exchange, a space where we can share our knowledge of growing, tricks and tips, and make a global knowledge sharing platform.