Food security: Farming the cities; feeding an urban future

As people move from rural to urban settings in search of economic opportunities, urban agriculture is becoming an important provider of both food and employment, according to researchers with the Worldwatch Institute. The rate of urban migration is particularly high in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, where inadequate urban infrastructure struggles to keep up with the large influx of people. In Africa, 14 million people migrate from rural to urban areas each year, and studies suggest that an estimated 35-40 million Africans living in cities will need to depend on urban agriculture to meet their food requirements in the future. Thus, organisations such as Urban Harvest and others are working across the African continent to enhance urban agricultural efforts. Read more here.
The Mail

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Banks coaxed to lend more to agriculture

Kenya’s Ministry of Finance has launched a programme in collaboration with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) aimed at spurring lending to the agricultural sector. IFAD has extended a grant-loan of $29.31 million to Kenya to provide better access to financial services, increase incomes, and improve production and outputs in the rural smallholder farm and off-farm sectors. Commercial banks limit lending to the agricultural sector due to perceived high risks associated with it, which hampers smallholder farms’ efforts to increase productivity. Read more here.
Michael Karanja