City farming is rapidly becoming a popular phenomenon. In Vancouver, Sole Food has opened its fourth urban farm: an orchard with 500 fruit trees in 800 large tubs on a piece of abandoned land that used to be a gas station. Together the urban farms of Sole Food produce 60 tons of food last year.
Organic food for local markets
Michael Ableman and Seann Dory, the founders of Sole Food, aim to make maximum use of limited space by making their plantings at the highest density possible. Their system of raised moveable planters can be stacked on a truck and moved. They estimate that the production methods Sole Food uses are 15 to 25 times more efficient than conventional open field farm planting. The fruit and vegetables the company grows are sold to local markets and restaurants to ensure that production and consumption all take place within a radius of several kilometres.
Urban farming around the globe
Dakakkers, a Dutch initiative in Rotterdam, is Europe’s largest city roof farm with its 1000 square meters of fields on the Schieblok building. In London, Aquaponics is using fish and its waste as soil-free farming technologies to cultivate vegetables. Goode Green from New York has installed a number of successful rooftop gardens including Eagle Street Rooftop farm, a 2000 square meter organic farm on top of a warehouse. In April this year, the world’s largest indoor farm opened its doors in Chicago on an abandoned warehouse site .