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Urban Agriculture Projects in Mumbai

Photo credit: Food Tank

Urban agriculture projects in Mumbai, India, make use of balconies and terraces.
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Mumbaikars Innovating with Space: 10 Urban Agriculture Projects in Mumbai

In a city that is hungry for both space and fresh produce, the need for urban agriculture in Mumbai is paramount—but its implementation requires some finesse. According to The New York Times, Mumbai occupies more than 370 square kilometers (230 square miles), but just 18.6 (11.6) are covered by open space, and only 6.3 (3.9) of those are open to most residents. How are Mumbaikars to grow in a city so pressed for space? These 10 organizations prove the city can do it.

City Farming is an organization that inspires students, families, and corporations to grow their own food in Mumbai—on terraces, balconies, and even the sides of buildings. Hosting weekly workshops, City Farming teaches Mumbaikars the growing methods of Dr. R. T. Doshi: with a little sugarcane waste, used polyethylene bags, soil, and seeds, the environmental impacts of pesticides, synthetic fertilizer, and the unnecessary disposal of organic waste are avoidable.

Established in November 2011, Earthoholics hosts urban farming shows, nature bazaars, and workshops on composting and hydroponics. Founder Smita D. Shirodkar teaches Mumbaikars that being green does not require buying expensive organic products, but rather a willingness to change your lifestyle, step out onto the balcony, and dirty your hands.

Fresh & Local is an organization that collaborates with various Mumbai establishments to use urban farming to transform the city. Its pop-up garden project addresses issues of privacy and safety for women, and The Table Farm garden provides food for the Mumbai restaurant The Table. Future plans include opening a series of shops carrying everything an urban farmer could need in Mumbai, “from open-pollinated vegetable seeds to eco-friendly pots to homemade natural fertilizers.”

With gardens at four schools in Mumbai, Green Schools Mumbai is an educational organization that teaches children about drip irrigation, growing medicinal herbs and plants with homemade compost, recycling wastewater, and harvesting rainwater. Using raised beds, children grow beans, garlic, okra, tomatoes, onions, and more at school.

Read the full article: Food Tank

Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.