Advertisement

Urban Agriculture in Chinese Cities: Practices, Motivations and Challenges

  • Geoff Luehr
  • Alesandros Glaros
  • Zhenzhong Si
  • Steffanie ScottEmail author
Chapter
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series (IPES)

Abstract

As cities in China continue to grow, concerns have emerged over the deterioration of social and environmental conditions in urban areas, alongside public anxiety over food safety. One potential strategy to address these issues is urban agriculture (UA). This chapter presents a typology of urban agriculture in China based on location and practices; examines the perspectives of producers, enterprises and state officials regarding their motivations for pursuing or supporting urban agriculture; and identifies how China’s unique political-economic context shapes urban agriculture developments. The findings suggest that various forms of urban agriculture exist in China, which vary by location, degree of capital investment and extent of state support or restrictions, and are motivated by common social, political and ecological concerns, to differing extents.

References

  1. Benis, K., & Ferrão, P. (2017). Potential Mitigation of the Environmental Impacts of Food Systems through Urban and Peri-urban Agriculture (UPA) – A Life Cycle Assessment Approach. Journal of Cleaner Production, 140, 784–795.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bosco, J.F. & Joassart-Marcelli, P. (2017). Gardens in the City: Community, Politics and Place in San Diego, California. In WinklerPrins, Antoinette M. G. A, & ProQuest (Firm) (Eds.), Global Urban Agriculture (pp. 50–65). Boston, MA; Wallingford, Oxfordshire: CABI.Google Scholar
  3. Ely, A., Geall, S., & Song, Y. (2016). Sustainable Maize Production and Consumption in China: Practices and Politics in Transition. Journal of Cleaner Production, 134, 259–268.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Ghose, B. (2014). Food Security and Food Self-Sufficiency in China: From Past to 2050. Food and Energy Security, 3(2), 86–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Gray, L., Diekmann, L. & Algert, S. (2017). North American Urban Agriculture: Barriers and Benefits. In WinklerPrins, Antoinette M. G. A, & ProQuest (Firm) (Eds.), Global Urban Agriculture (pp. 24–37). Boston, MA: Wallingford; Oxfordshire: CABI.Google Scholar
  6. Gu, S. (2009). The Emergence and Development of Vegetable Sector in China: An Analysis from the Sectoral Innovation Systems Perspective. Industry and Innovation, 16(4–5), 369–388. Retrieved from http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.582.292&rep=rep1&type=pdf.
  7. Hayashi, E. (2016). Current Status of Commercial Plant Factories with LED Lighting Market in Asia, Europe, and Other Regions. In T. Kozai, K. Fujiwara, & E. Runkle (Eds.), LED Lighting for Urban Agriculture. Singapore: Springer Science and Business Media Singapore.Google Scholar
  8. Horowitz, S. S. & Liu, J. (2017). Urban Agriculture and Reassembly of the City: Lessons from Wuhan, China. In WinklerPrins, Antoinette M. G. A, & ProQuest (Firm) (Eds.), Global Urban Agriculture (pp. 207–219). Boston, MA; Wallingford, Oxfordshire: CABI.Google Scholar
  9. Jacobi, P., Amend, J., & Kiango, S. (2000). In N. Bakker, M. Dubbeling, S. Guendel, & U. Sabel (Eds.), Urban Agriculture in Dar es Salaam: Providing an Indispensable Part of the Diet. Boston, MA; Wallingford, Oxfordshire: CABI.Google Scholar
  10. Jianming, C., Hua, G., Muller, L., & Zhou, M. (2012). Urban Food Supply under Constrained Land Resources in Beijing: Potential and Optimization. Journal of Resources and Ecology, 3(3), 269–277.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of the People’s Republic of China. (2017). Retrieved from http://english.agri.gov.cn/news/dqnf/201702/t20170213_247213.htm.
  12. Mol, A. (2006). Environment and Modernity in Transitional China: Frontiers of Ecological Modernization. Development and Change, 37(1), 29–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Morgan, K. (2015). Nourishing the City: The Rise of the Urban Food Question in the Global North. Urban Studies, 52(8), 1379–1394.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Mougeot, L. J. A. (2000). Urban Agriculture: Definition, Presence, Potentials and Risks. In N. Bakker, M. Dubbeling, S. Guendel, U. Sabel Koschella, & H. de Zeeuw (Eds.), Growing Cities, Growing Food: Urban Agriculture on the Policy Agenda (pp. 1–42). RUAF Foundation.Google Scholar
  15. Mougeot, L. (2005). Introduction. In L. Mougeot (Ed.), Agropolis: The Social, Political and Environmental Dimensions of Urban Agriculture (pp. 1–29). Ottawa, Canada; London; Sterling, VA: International Development Research Centre; Earthscan.Google Scholar
  16. Opitz, I., Berges, R., Piorr, A., & Krikser, T. (2016). Contributing to Food Security in Urban Areas: Differences between Urban Agriculture and Peri-urban Agriculture in the Global North. Agriculture and Human Values, 33(2), 341–358.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Psarikidou, K., & Szerszynski, B. (2010). Growing the Social: Alternative Agrofood Networks and Social Sustainability in the Urban Ethical Foodscape. Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy, 8(1), 30–39.Google Scholar
  18. Roberts, R. (2017). China Signs $300m Deal to Buy Lab-Grown Meat from Israel in Move Welcomed by Vegans. Retrieved from https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/china-israel-trade-deal-lab-grown-meat-veganism-vegetarianism-a7950901.html.
  19. Schneider, M. (2014). What, Then, Is a Chinese Peasant? Nongmin Discourses and Agroindustrialization in Contemporary China. Agriculture and Human Values, 32(2), 331.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Schumilas, T., & Scott, S. (2016). Beyond ‘Voting with Your Chopsticks’: Community Organizing for Safe Food in China. Asia Pacific Viewpoint, 57(3), 301–312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Schupp, J. L., & Sharp, J. S. (2012). Exploring the Bases of Home Gardening. Agriculture and Human Values, 29, 93–105.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Scott, S., Si, Z., Schumilas, T., & Chen, A. (2014). Contradictions in State- and Civil Society Driven Developments in China’s Ecological Agriculture Sector. Food Policy, 45, 158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Si, Z., & Scott, S. (2016a, May). Hungry Cities Project Discussion Paper No. 2: Approaching Sustainable Urban Development in China through a Food System Planning Lens. Retrieved from http://hungrycities.net/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Hungry-Cities-Final-Discussion-Paper-No-2.pdf.
  24. Si, Z., & Scott, S. (2016b). The Convergence of Alternative Food Networks within ‘Rural Development’ Initiatives: The Case of the New Rural Reconstruction Movement in China. Local Environment, 21(9), 1082–1099.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Si, Z., Scott, S., & Schumilas, T. (2015). Characterizing Alternative Food Networks in China. Agriculture and Human Values, 32(2), 299.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Si, Z., Reginer-Davies, J., & Scott, S. (2017). Food Safety in Urban China: Perceptions and Coping Strategies of Residents in Nanjing. China Information.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0920203X17742887.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Si, Z., Scott, S., & McCordic, C. (2018) Wet Markets, Supermarkets and Alternative Food Sources: Consumers’ Food Access in Nanjing, China, Canadian Journal of Development Studies.  https://doi.org/10.1080/02255189.2018.1442322.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Simon, D. (2008). Urban Environments: Issues on the Peri-urban Fringe. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 33, 167–185.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Smit, J., Ratta, A., & Nasr, J. (2001). Urban Agriculture: Food, Jobs and Sustainable Cities. The Urban Agriculture Network, pp. 1–31. Retrieved from http://www.jacsmit.com/book/Chap02.pdf.
  30. Stewart, R., Korth, M., Langer, L., Rafferty, S., Da Silva, N., & Rooyen, C. (2013). What Are the Impacts of Urban Agriculture Programs on Food Security in Low and Middle-Income Countries? Environmental Evidence, 2(1), 7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Yang, Z., Cai, J., & Sliuzas, R. (2010). Agro-tourism Enterprises as a Form of Multi-Functional Urban Agriculture for Peri-urban Development in China. Habitat International, 34(4), 374–385.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Zhang, F., Cai, J., & Liu, G. (2009). How Urban Agriculture is Reshaping Peri-Urban Beijing. Open House International, 34(2), 15–24.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geoff Luehr
    • 1
  • Alesandros Glaros
    • 1
  • Zhenzhong Si
    • 2
  • Steffanie Scott
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.University of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.Balsillie School of International AffairsWaterlooCanada

Personalised recommendations