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The future for food? Urban and local growing?

With the seas overfished and commercial farming becoming over reliant on fossil fuels, urban and local food production is making the news. Perhaps we should shout louder about BigBarn’s Crop for the Shop initiative.

There was a very interesting article in the Guardian about roof top and car park fish farming in Germany where the waste from the fish is used in hydroponics to fertilize plants such as tomatoes.

And in China The Beijing Agricultural Bureau is trying to encourage the cultivation of mini-farms on balconies and in yards by offering residents free seeds and farming equipment. “Growing one’s own greens can help to reduce carbon emissions, clean the air and release stress.”

The Transition movement have been campaigning for years about oil running out, and that we must change to thinking about growing food instead of prickly bushes and shrubs. Why don’t landscapers’ plant fruit and nut trees instead of ‘squirrel food’ trees.

At BigBarn we have our Crop for The Shop campaign encouraging people to grow food and sell any excess through local retailers marked with a rosette on our map. This gives some retailers, not big enough to buy fresh from a wholesaler, the chance to stock enough produce to attract local customers and become the hub for local fresh food.

It also means that, in these austere times, some people can save on buying food and earn on any excess produce. Even more important kids can get involved and eat healthy fruit and veg.

So look out for dead shrubs and a bit of space in your garden, or balcony, and get growing some food. Plant some fruit and nut trees this autumn and see the benefits for years to come.

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