RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2016


334 Cities as Nodes in the Food Nexus (1): Learning from the Global South and North
Affiliation Food Geographies Working Group
Convenor(s) Beth Perry (University of Salford, UK)
Michael Hardman (University of Salford, UK)
Gareth Haysom (University of Cape Town, South Africa)
Peter Rundkvist (City of Gothenburg, Sweden)
Chair(s) Beth Perry (University of Salford, UK)
Timetable Friday 02 September 2016, Session 3 (14:40 - 16:20)
Session abstract Cities are unique crucibles for exploring the food nexus as sites within which the complex inter-relationships between infrastructure and space, people and place can be examined. Contributors to this session have been invited to draw on examples of food-based initiatives in different urban contexts from the Global South to North to explore the dynamic interconnections in the urban food nexus. A specific focus is on the relationship between governance, policy and practice and the diverse tensions and rationalities that emerge. In Session 1, we will explore diverse urban foodscapes using a variety of approaches, including films and gaming alongside more traditional paper presentations. In Session 2, we will then seek to generate a world café style discussion to identify key research and practice challenges in the urban food nexus.
Linked Sessions Cities as Nodes in the Food Nexus (2): A World Café Conversation
Contact the conference organisers to request a change to session or paper details: AC2016@rgs.org
The Food Energy Water Nexus: A Local Governance Prerequisite in Cape Town
Gareth Haysom (University of Cape Town, South Africa)
The concept of the 'nexus' is increasingly used as a means to engage in the intersecting and mutually reinforcing resource challenges of food, water and energy. These engagements reflect three distinct strands of enquiry and practice. Firstly, emerging from wider sustainable development discourses, there is a distinct environmental bias. Secondly, linking food and water directs attention to rural areas, reinforcing the rural bias evident in much of the food systems and food security debates. Finally, from a policy perspective food, water and energy governance concerns are often the domains of national government departments and ministries. As a result, a national scale focus on the food/water/energy nexus dominates. In an increasingly urban world, consideration of the food/water/energy nexus in cities needs to be addressed. This paper will argue that the urban scale requires far greater attention. Urban scale food, water and energy governance is an emerging trend and can play a significant role in addressing specific contextually informed needs and challenges. Through a short case study discussion on the Philippi Horticultural Area in Cape Town, evidence of an area highlighting the intersecting strands of this nexus. The presentation will draw on evidence from urban governance interventions actively considering such nexus issues. The presentation will also reflect on the consequences of an absent food/water/energy nexus focus at the urban scale through
Producers' Learning Experiences within Ouagadougou's City-region Foodscape
Imogen Bellwood-Howard (Georg-August University Göttingen, Germany)
The Ouagadougou city-region in foodscape is a space of juxtapositions: in a national context concerned by food security, Ouagadougou's cosmopolitan middle class and expat populations provide a market for gourmet products and imports. Pro-organic discourses referencing health and tradition give a distinctive flavour to local agribusiness initiatives, based around local foodstuffs and fusions with occidental delicacies, from sheafruit and banana jams to dried locusts and moringa powder. Vegetable sites cluster around irrigation points, and milk and meat production abounds in peri-urban zones. Yet byelaws discourage urban agriculture, alongside public consternation about its potential health risks. The UrbanFoodPlus research project on West African Urban Agriculture spans Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso and Tamale, Ghana. Participant Ghanaian farmers expressed an interest in travelling to Ouagadougou to learn about larger-scale production, technology and commercialisation. We took this developmentalist objective as the starting point for an exploratory farmer exchange between the two towns, comprising trips to production and processing initiatives at different scales, including a mini dairy, charcuterie and drip-irrigated moringa plantation. Going beyond promoting value addition, the excursion aims to open a space where producers experience the city-region foodscape and reflect on how its shape interlocutes with their practice. Footage from a documentary film trip will be shown, drawing on images of the study sites and producers' interpretations of them, as a tool to prompt discussion on the intersections between diverse production, transformation, sale and consumption spaces in the Ouagadougou city-region foodscape.
Stephen Agong (African Academy of Sciences, Kenya)
Paul Opiyo (Co-Author)
Frankline Otiende (Co-Author)
Alfred Otom (Co-Author)
Kisumu like most cities in developing countries is unable to cope with impacts of the rapid urbanization. This results into rapid increase in urban poverty and urban food insecurity. The urban agriculture provides an opportunity to reduce urban poverty and food insecurity as well as enhance urban environmental management. Responding to urban food sustainability is an important component of urban agriculture that complements the cost of supplying and distributing food to the City. The fundamentals of food affordability are based on the rural production and imports that continue to increase and hardly satisfy the demand especially of the urban poor. Kisumu relies on food import of up to about 90% of what is consumed in the City. The urban food security thus is important for the local economic development, poverty alleviation and social inclusion of the poor. Women and youth in particular stand to benefit from urban food security. Urban food security supplements urban greening and the productive reuse of urban wastes. The urban food sustainability aspect entails technological transfer such as the use of solar power for irrigation and rainwater harvesting where appropriate while mainstreaming active food production. The policy implementation on urban food security relies on multi-stakeholders' participation approach. Value addition to the food products and resources remains to be one of the best solutions of addressing urban food security. In the context of regional cities like Kisumu, rapid urbanization poses the challenge of the permanent loss of indigenous seeds too. The germplasm is adaptable to the local environment and can endure the climate change. Food resources in urban context may face eventual extinction and will further escalate food insecurity in the future in mitigation approaches are not addressed. This paper proposes the establishment of prototype seed banks in Kisumu that will serve as conservation, training and research center to protect indigenous seeds for posterity and foster urban food security.
The Peri-urban Foodscape in Gothenburg
Peter Rundkvist (City of Gothenburg, Sweden)
In Gothenburg, the demand for locally produced organic food has increased rapidly. Today, consumption, mainly concentrated in restaurants, cafés, households, schools, hospitals etc. in the central parts of the city, is far beyond available supplies. Swedish food production is a highly centralized industry. Small producers are thrown out of the market. The former foodscapes surrounding Gothenburg have been replaced by infrastructure like railways, motorway junctions, shopping malls, logistic centres. But there are also suburbs, planned in the 1960's, and today the home of immigrants and refugees from all over the world. The division of the foodscape between the urban and rural areas goes hand in hand with the social and economic segregation between the centre and the periphery. What will a new market for sustainable small scale organic peri-urban food production look like? Would it result in new jobs for people in deprived areas? Who would become the consumers? A MISTRA Urban Futures feasibility study carried out in Gothenburg 2015 - 2016 has identified a number of interdisciplinary focus areas for research, as well as innovation test beds for sustainable urban development and food security in the North Eastern areas of the city.
Exploring Greater Manchester's Foodscape through Gamification
Michael Hardman (University of Salford, UK)
Beth Perry (University of Salford, UK)
The Greater Manchester food scene is rich and complex: there is a wide array of urban food projects, from publicly-funded initiatives, such as the Real Food Wythenshawe programme (a £1 million Big Lottery funded 5 year project designed to improve eating habits), to innovative projects such as the Biospheric Foundation, a closed-loop system growing food in a disused warehouse space. Complementing these projects are policy initiatives and fora, with discussions about appropriate governance structures, as well as smaller urban food initiatives, which can be found throughout the region; enabling communities to have greater access to fresh produce within the urban environment. This 'interactive' paper is designed to enable participants to get hands-on with Greater Manchester's foodscape through drawing on gaming principles. Participants will travel through the region's diverse landscape through a board game and experience the opportunities and barriers around urban food in the area. Questions on the board will be drawn from a recent Mistra Urban Futures pilot project exploring the Greater Manchester foodscape.