Fresh Food

New York City Will Take a New Approach to Urban Agriculture

The Lempert Report: Bill creates a resource for urban farmers and community gardeners.

 

New York City will take on a new approach to urban farming. A centralized digital hub was unanimously approved in bill 1661-A, and sponsored by Council Member Rafael Espinal, at the request of Eric L. Adams, the Brooklyn borough president. 

According to Espinal, this bill will bring a new excitement to New Yorkers who are looking to go green and healthy.

“Our bill creates, for the first time, a resource for urban farmers and community gardeners to start up and grow an urban farm,” he said in a statement. “Our urban farmers are operating in an ambiguous and grey area, not receiving the support and information they needed from our city government. Smart, innovative urban-farming techniques are leading the food revolution and supplying healthy, locally grown food to our communities. It is time that NYC step up and support this movement with our own digital tools to make it easier for these entrepreneurs, and to acknowledge our commitment to this industry.” 

The hub, which goes live July 1, will be run by the New York City Parks and Recreation Department in collaboration with educators and representatives from existing community gardens. It will be a one-stop-shop database for those looking to get involved with local urban gardens and farms and to help aid those who are looking to start their own. 

According to their press release, “Urban agriculture is estimated to be a $9 billion industry in the United States, with the potential to feed 20 million people in the New York City metropolitan area.” 

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