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Sustainable crop and food systems in an urbanizing world - Revised version











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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Sustainable crop and food systems in cities 2016
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    This fac tsheet is one in a series about main the activities of the AG Department. This factsheet in particular is about Sustainable crop and food systems in cities and illustrates the work AGP is doing in this area.

    Urban and peri-urban horticulture (UPH) is the cultivation of a wide range of crops – including fruit, vegetables, roots, tubers and ornamental plants – within cities and towns and in their surrounding areas. UPH is a key component of robust and resilient urban food syste ms and empowers the urban poor. FAO provides support to Member Countries to meet the challenges of massive and rapid urbanization in terms of achieving food security and nutrition goals.

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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Innovating to enable integrated services for innovation to promote urban and peri-urban agriculture 2024
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    The United Nations envisions that, by 2050, almost 70 percent of the global growing population will be living in urban areas, especially in small cities and towns within Africa and Asia. This will mean more people to feed in these cities, as well as the risk of nutrition problems and increased levels of obesity associated with changes in diet and lifestyle. In this context, agriculture will need to produce more nutritious food while competing for ever scarcer natural resources and struggling with the effects of climate change. Furthermore, the world is facing recent critical events such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the fuel crisis, both of which highlight the need for resilient agrifood systems in both urban and rural areas. As a result, urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA), practices that are centuries-old, are growing in importance as a means of helping to ensure the food security and livelihoods of urban dwellers. UPA can yield numerous benefits, but comes with challenges, as it is practised within the context of a high competition for natural resources, especially land. Furthermore, its practitioners – urban dwellers or migrants – often lack the necessary knowledge and skills to succeed. Given the growing importance of UPA, the integrated services for innovation (ISI) must adapt and be enabled to serve urban and peri-urban producers and other agrifood actors.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    On-farm practices for the safe use of wastewater in urban and peri-urban horticulture
    A training handbook for Farmer Field Schools in Sub-Saharan Africa
    2019
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    The world’s population is growing rapidly and concentrating in urban centres. This trend is particularly intense in developing countries, where an additional 2.1 billion people are expected to be living in cities by 2030. However, sanitation coverage (collection and treatment) is not keeping pace with urban growth and as a result most wastewater enters water courses untreated. Many farmers in developing countries grow crops, especially vegetables, in urban and peri-urban environments using this wastewater, raw or diluted, to irrigate their crops. Such wastewater is often heavily contaminated with disease- causing organisms and chemical agents that can seriously harm the health of the farmers, the traders who handle crops and the people who consume them. It is therefore very important for urban and peri-urban vegetable farmers to be aware of the health-risks associated with using wastewater for their irrigating crops and to know how to use wastewater safely at farm level to reduce those health risks. Safe irrigation methods are essential when using wastewater for irrigation, but they need to be complemented with other practices from farm to fork to ensure the safety of others involved in the value chain. In 2006, the World Health Organization (WHO), together with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), adopted a multiple-barrier approach to reduce the health risks to farmers and consumers posed by using wastewater in agriculture. This approach opened the door to targeting a variety of entry points where health risks occur or can be mitigated before the food is consumed. This handbook focuses on low-cost and low-tech on-farm wastewater treatment and safe irrigation practices that farmers can adopt to grow safer products. When using the pronoun ‘you’, the handbook addresses extension officers, trainers of farmers, and farmers interested to apply and share new knowledge.

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