Garden of Eden Urban Farming
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Toward a new economic engine
Outreach and Advocacy

Twin Dilemmas of the Urban Food Desert

Why we do this

Dilemma 1: Deficient Nutrition

  • Lack of retail food outlets
  • Distance from farm to market leading to loss of nutrients
  • Lack of variety
  • Reliance on low-end grocery chains and fast food shops
  • High fat and sugar diets; few fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Often called the food desert; may be urban or rural

Potential Improvements

Vegetables are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, dietary fiber, folate (folic acid), vitamin A, and vitamin C. ...

Dietary fiber from vegetables, as part of an overall healthy diet, helps reduce blood cholesterol levels.

Fruits and veggies are naturally low in calories and high in vitamins and minerals.

Eating plenty of fruits and veggies may help reduce the risk of many diseases, including heart disease, high blood pressure, and some cancers.

The New Dietary Regime

Goals

  • Reduce obesity and disease
  • Improve general nutrition
  • Shrink the food desert
  • Adopt healthy lifestyles

Objectives

  • Grow more fruits and vegetables locally
  • Expand availability: promote sales in more places
  • Train families and children in health eating

Success Criteria

  • More quality food sources in neighborhoods
  • Greater variety of dietary options
  • Shorter distance to quality vendors and products

Results!

The following effects may be noted by adopting local sourcing:
  • Improved Nutrition
  • Greater dietary quality and variety

Dilemma 2: Weak Local Economy

  • General unemployment
  • Worker dislocation or discrimination
  • Disappearing employers
  • Lack of (re)training options

Potential Improvements

New employment in food production can add jobs immediately.

New businesses have secondary benefits over time including "export" income from goods and services, training, consulting, data processing and the use of the program as a destination training center.

The multiplier effect as new economic acitivity is created can include higher incomes and business and tax revenues increase.

The New Economic Engine

Goals

  • Create employment
  • Shrink the food desert
  • Live without pesticides, herbicides, artificial growth enhancement, etc.
  • Create a replicable model for other communities with similar issues

Objectives

  • Create Model Program
  • Organize for Success
  • Manage Operations
  • Train Workers
  • Build Strong Financial Support
    • Budget realistically from operations
    • Monitor budget compliance
    • Manage risk
    • Expand judiciously
    • Report accurately, transparently

Success Criteria

  • Community Involved?
  • Partners Attracted?
  • Policies Transparent?
  • Surpluses Shared?
  • Listening and Learning?
  • Open Door Management?

Results!

The following effects may be noted by adopting local sourcing:

  • Community based, local, hydroponic farming in modern, urban, vertical form, efficiently operated by technically trained employees working in

    • Hydroponic farming, primary activity
    • Hydroponics as seasonal supplement to traditional farms
    • Repair & maintenance
    • Equipment sales, service
    • Related training
    • Home applications
    • Non-profits, schools, housing




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