What is Urban Farming? Wagstaff and Wortman (2013), define urban farming as all forms of food and non-food production activities in the agricultural sector that occur in or around cities. Several kinds of literature also mention urban farming as the production of foodstuffs both from plants and animals in urban areas and their surroundings, both for personal needs and for commercial purposes (Diekmann et. al., 2016)
What is Urban Farming?
From Sciencedirect.com, The definition of urban farming refers to agricultural activities in urban areas and their surroundings (suburbs). These activities include the horticultural sector, animal husbandry, aquaculture, hydroponics, aquaponics, microgreen, vertical farming, and other practices that aim to produce fresh food or other agricultural products.
Urban farming generally only uses limited land around living quarters or empty land which is deliberately used individually or collectively. With the limited land available, farming activities in urban areas are well known for the use of several unconventional techniques.
According to John and Reynnallls (2016), Urban and rural is differentiate based on population density and land use. If rural is correlated with a low population density per kilometer, as well as the amount of agricultural land and forest. So urban areas have the characteristics of high population density, as well as a land filled with buildings everywhere. It is almost difficult to find unused open land in the area. Except for city parks, as well as public facilities / green areas.
Why Is Urban Farming Starting To Be A Trend Today And Future?
Smarter Peoples And Healthy Lifestyle
Nowadays people are getting smarter. a healthy lifestyle is spreading everywhere. This healthy lifestyle is mainly the choice of food. People have become more consistent in choosing healthy foods. People increasingly understand that vegetables and fruits are a source of healthy nutrition. And quality vegetables are vegetables that contain very little pesticide residue.
For example, people have started to understand that the production process of chickens and eggs is currently closely related to the use of hormones, vaccines, and other chemicals that are not good for health. They prefer meat that also contains a little chemical residue from the production process.
Although in many countries the level of vegetable consumption is still low under the FAO recommendation, the trend of vegetable consumption is increasing evenly in almost all countries. The facts from several sources state that the increase in vegetable consumption is directly proportional to the level of community welfare.
This means that developed countries tend to have higher levels of vegetable consumption compared to developing countries. Or in a more narrow sense, the rich group will tend to consume more vegetables than the middle to lower economic groups.
Increasingly Prevalent During A Pandemic
During the pandemic and the implementation of lockdown from last year, Indonesia saw a surge in the purchase of agricultural equipment and materials. The business that has grown rapidly in terms of turnover is the agricultural equipment business. The population of people doing farming activities in urban areas has also increased very rapidly.
With restrictions on movement between regions and health risks when traveling, people prefer to stay at home and make efforts to meet their needs at their place of residence. so many people suddenly became farmers and planted various methods. Starting from pots, hydroponics, aquaponics, to vertical farming. Before the pandemic people asking about what is urban farming actually? but then it will become more clear now
This Will Become Trend In The Future
What is the reason that makes urban farming is interesting?. Let us combine some of the facts above. The first is that people are smarter and more concerned with their health. they will choose foods that are healthy and not risky for their bodies. The second is a pandemic that may still longer or the possibility to repeat itself. So that this will make people more prepared for the future. The two things above are the reasons why urban farming will become a trend in the future. Because the pandemic is happening globally, this urban farming trend will also become global.
How Will The Urban Farming Platform Will Be Formed?
If we look from several aspects, urban farming departs from several reasons, namely: fulfillment of personal needs, business, as a means of education, and engagement to the community. So, in the future, urban farming always starts from one or the combination of the four reasons above. What is urban farming offer then?
It could be a person or a community together doing urban farming activities to fulfill their needs or for commercial purposes. It is also possible for individuals or business entities to do so for educational and/or commercial business purposes. Or it could be, all will combine to become reasons. Besides fulfilling personal needs and engagement with surrounding neighbors/communities, people also take advantage of urban farming activities as a means of education and business.
What Is Urban Farming benefits?
Learning Primitive Skill Of Our Ancestor, Farming Skill
It seems that in almost all countries the population of farmers is currently decreasing drastically. This happens because more of the younger generation are not interested anymore to become farmers. They prefer a computer-front job and a clean place. Farming is still synonymous with working in a dirty place. Students who choose to major in agriculture also declined drastically. Accounting, Law, computer science is more attractive to the younger generation.
Fortunately, nowadays, some of the younger generations have started to find a passion for farming with style. it turns out that the digital era also gave the rising to millennial farmers. They not only make farming as their daily activities, but they use it as a platform for their existence in social media.
Free To Grow Whatever Plants We Want
What is urban farming advantage practically?. We know best what we will need. By planting ourselves, we can choose the type and planting time. Gradually, the choosing of plant types and when to plant them will become more and more accustomed.
Based on experience, the selection of plant types can be started from the easiest ones first, then to those that are difficult to maintain. Selection can also be based on the type or variety that we want the most. Everything is free as you wish, but it depends on your farming skill level.
gradually, we can harvest daily food needs from our own land. maybe not 100% but at least it will reduce the monthly grocery purchase budget. This was also done by our ancestors in the early days when food was not yet a commodity. At that time people only focus on personal needs and used bartering techniques with neighbors or people in different regions.
Because we prepare the food source ourselves, we can judge for ourselves the safety level. We will get a supply of healthier food. Because we can choose cultivation with minimal use of pesticides. This is difficult to ascertain when we get food sources from the market. Food self-sufficiency is one of the benefits from what is urban farming can give to use
Fresh Food And Reduce Waste
What is urban farming can do to reduce waste?. By planting it ourselves, we only need to leave the house and harvest immediately as needed. We can reduce the duration of time to exit the market. And reduce products that are not fresh because it requires time and a long distance before it reaches the end consumer.
Currently, food distribution channels still have a waste problem. Starting from the waste that is generated during the shipping process from the production land to the market, the waste that exists when the product is sold, and the waste that is at the end consumer level. The urban farming concept has the potential to reduce waste because it only takes what is needed and leaves the rest to be collected later.
Waste from the packaging process is still a big issue in urban areas. Plastic trash everywhere. use of free space for farming and using it for daily needs can reduce waste from packaging material. Because waste is a common problem everywhere, by practicing urban farming we can contribute to making our world better.
What Is Urban Farming Correlation With Grooming Our Brain
The activity of farming and raising livestock requires continuity for better results. This will create an emotional bond with plants and animals as the object. daily relationships form strong synapses in the brain cells. By seeing and enjoying the urban farming process, we will be happy, and our brains will be filled with useful things.
As written by Jonathan S. Kaplan at psychologytoday.com, he presented several research results that looked at the relationship between plants and brain condition. These studies were carried out in several places that were not cultivated areas such as rice fields, plantation areas. The results of this study state that the presence/seeing of plants every day is proven to lower blood pressure, improve reaction times, improve productivity, increase attentiveness, and lower levels of anxiety.
farming activities encourage us to do physical activity. starting from land preparation, planting media preparation, seed preparation, maintenance, to harvesting. all require physical activity. Routine activities that can improve body health easily and cheaply.
Conserve And Save Space
how much free space is there around us? although it is only enough to put 1-2 potted plants, this will result in savings even in a matter of cents. We will save more and more cents when we use the freer space that is around us. Not to mention later we used vertical farming and hydroponic techniques. We can design a cultivation pattern so that we can effectively fill the free spaces available around the house.
What Is Urban Farming Contribution For Communal Unity
Urban society, synonymous with individualistic society. barely had time to interact with neighbors. There is a term “broken window” to describe life in urban areas. This term describes the condition of the absence of interaction between one family and another among neighbors.
These urban farming activities will be interesting things when done together. One neighborhood did together in their respective yards and exchanged ideas and tricks. The interactions that occur, even though maybe only every weekend, will improve interpersonal relationships in neighbors. It would be more interesting if the type of farming used different plants, there would be activities to exchange foods among neighbors. Conditions that are currently difficult to see in urban communities.
What Is Urban Farming Opportunity For The New Business Model
urban farming uses several possible approaches to produce yields that are much higher than conventional farming of the same acre. This allows the emergence of new businesses in urban areas using hydroponic, vertical farming, aquaponics, and indoor farming methods.
Currently, a new start-up has begun to offer fresh vegetables ready to be delivered home. In the future, urban farming will be a promising business model. Not to mention when we can arrange the location aesthetically. This urban farming location can also be used as a source of money in the form of training, visits, or is intentionally opened as a tourist spot. Of course, it can be combined with a restaurant that serves fresh vegetables and other fresh foods as the main menu.
How Is The Consumption Of Vegetables In The Future?
Vegetable consumption will continue to increase. even people will start to explore new varieties and types of vegetables that provide health benefits to them. Benefits that are not able to be provided by the vegetables currently available.
Understanding food as medicine will be more interesting. Vegetables that are well known for their natural fiber and antioxidant content will increasingly become an option on the daily menu. People will prefer vegetables that have an impact on increasing immunity and improving their health.
How Is The Condition Of Farmers In The Future?
The fact that has happened at this time, the population of farmers has decreased. Likewise with land area. In some developed countries, it is even more visible. If in developing countries, farmers are identical with a relatively large population but only have a narrow land. so in developed countries, there are already a few farmers, but each of them controls a large area of land. In the future, it seems that the second condition will increasingly become a trend in all countries.
- Diekmann, L., Dawson, J., Kowalski, J., Raison, B., Ostrom, M., Bennaton, R., & Fisk, C. (2016). Preliminary Results: Survey of Extension’s Role in Urban Agriculture, (August), 1–15.
- John, P. L. C., & Reynnalls, L. (2016). What is rural? Retrieved December 10, 2018, from https://www.nal.usda.gov/ric/what-is-rural
- Wagstaff, R. K., & Wortman, S. E. (2013). Crop physiological response across the Chicago metropolitan region: Developing recommendations for urban and peri-urban farmers in the North Central US. Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, 30(x), 1–7. https://doi.org/10.1017/S174217051300046X
always love to learn from nature. Passionate on studying plants in some aspects: the DNA, Identification, propagation, and their uses