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News at Brighter Green

Executive Director Mia MacDonald Quoted in Civil Eats Article 1/26/15

Executive Director Mia MacDonald was quoted in Advisory Board member Anna Lappe's article on Chatham House's recent study on peoples' understanding of climate change and food, particularly meat production. You can view the Civil Eats article here.

New Report Released by Brighter Green and the Global Forest Coalition on the Unsustainable Impacts of Livestock and Soybean Production in Paraguay 1/22/15

Brighter Green and the Global Forest Coalition, published a new report entitled, "Meat from a Landscape Under Threat: Testimonies of the Impacts of Unsustainable Livestock and Soybean Production in Paraguay". You can access the report here.

Brighter Green Featured in NYC Meatless Monday Press Release 1/22/15

Brighter Green and Executive Director Mia MacDonald were featured in NYC City Council Representative Helen Rosenthal's press release on the push for NYC to adopt the Meatless Monday campaign.

Executive Director Mia MacDonald Appears on Our Hen House's Highlight Reel Podcast Episode 1/10/15

Brighter Green Executive Director Mia MacDonald appears on Our Hen House's highlight reel episode on January 10th. The original TV episode can be viewed here.

East African Girls' Leadership Initiative Program Update 1/10/15

Brighter Green and Tribal Link released a January Program Update on the East African Girls' Leadership Initiative. You can access it here.

Brighter Green and Humane Society International Publish COP 20 Policy Recommendations 12/4/14

Brighter Green and Humane Society International published a policy recommendation document on animal agriculture and climate change for the COP 20 meeting in Lima, Peru. You can access the document here.

Brighter Green Releases Summary on Forthcoming Nature's Rights Paper 10/14/14

Brighter Green released a summary of a forthcoming nature's rights paper entitled Nature's Rights: Rivers, Trees, Whales, and Apes.

Jim Harkness Positively Reviews "What's For Dinner?" 10/6/14

Jim Harkness Senior Advisor on China at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy positively reviews "What's For Dinner?" and interviews Executive Director Mia MacDonald.

Brighter Green Associate Interviewed by "Eating Animals" Director, Christopher Quinn 9/29/14

Brighter Green Associate Wanqing Zhou was interviewed by Eating Animals director Christopher Quinn. BG also provided Mr. Quinn Chinese contacts, including What's For Dinner? director Jian Yi, for the film.

Brighter Green Associate Wanqing Zhou interviewed by Our Hen House 7/23/14

Brighter Green Associate Wanqing Zhou was interviewed by Our Hen House on Brighter Green's What's For Dinner? and China screening tour in June and July 2014.

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Rooftops: the New Agricultural Commodity

October 22, 2012 12:00pm
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Amid growing concerns about food security and food safety, residents of Hong Kong have taken urban farming to a new level: their rooftops. The main motivation for this new endeavor is, according to a recent New York Times article, to ensure a ready supply of chemical free, fresh vegetables. Finding themselves limited by policies governing the sparse open land in Hong Kong, residents looked to the sky.

There are mounting concerns about the safety of the produce found in urban Chinese markets, and vegetables labeled as organic are skyrocketing in price. Legal establishment of a farm is no small feat, though. For his farm, Mr. Lam supplied $65,000: an investment for permits, irrigation, equipment and "land use." But the price is right for those concerned with the source of the food they eat, and for others who want to buy local and safe. Rooftop farms are also a much smaller investment than buying or leasing a tract of land, and a safer one, too. Mr. Lam notes that he is able to disassemble and reassemble his farm if necessary.

Could rooftop gardens be a piece in the puzzle of supplying non-industrialized food to Chinese citizens at an affordable price? Mr. Lam might not be alone in his appreciation for what he has grown. As most people who venture into growing their own vegetables find, it is a rewarding experience, as Stella Zhou reported from her home city of Hangzhou in southern China. Access to fresh vegetables may renew an appreciation for vegetable-based dishes. Fresh vegetables may become the new vogue, as opposed to increased meat consumption.

This phenomenon is not limited to China; here in New York City, a growing number of residents and restaurants have set up their own rooftop farms, in an attempt to achieve hyper-locavorism. Knowing how your food is grown and where it comes from is one of the first steps in moving away from industrialized farming. Even with the push towards urban farming, it would be impossible to feed entire cities solely from the food currently produced in local, small farms. But with innovative ideas such as rooftop farming, businesses and residents are taking steps towards realizing the seemingly impossible, in China, the U.S. or elsewhere.

Image courtesy U.S. National Archives