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Growing Food for London conference

This event looked at urban agriculture: its impact on the food security of London, its role in preserving the capital's open space, educating and improving the health of Londoners and potentially reducing the distance that London's food has travelled. 

Report of the 'Growing Food For London Conference' now available. Click here. 

Through a series of presentations from British and international experts, including academics, growers, and other experts we explored what opportunities there are for producing more food and how this can be achieved in a sustainable way.  As hoped, we reached full capacity and the attendees included planners, growers, architects, policy makers and many more involved in the capital's food sector. This event was jointly organised with the London Parks and Green Spaces Forum, as part of the London Festival of Architecture.

Location: City Hall Conference Rooms 4 & 5
Date: Monday, 30th June 2008, 09:30 -17:30 (Doors at 09:00) 
Days events: Talks, presentations, stalls, networking session, lunch and tea and coffee breaks provided using locally sourced ingredients.

Agenda & Presentations

Presentations, speakers and themes for the Growing Food for London conference.

List of Themes

Throughout the day, the current global food crisis provided as useful rationale for more food to be grown in cities.The day was split into a series of sessions focusing in on opportunities to increase the amount of food being grown in London and what urban agriculture projects are currenty running in the capital. An international dimension was also provided with examples of urban food growing in Canada.

Commercial viability of urban agriculture

  • Agriculture in the urban fringe
  • Social enterprises as a model

Spaces for growing more food

  • Parks
  • Housing estates
  • Roof gardens

Future opportunities

  • Planning food growing into new developments
  • Greening 2012 Olympics
  • Skills and training for growers
  • Funding opportunities

Speakers include

Tim Lang, Professor of Food Policy at City University, former Director of the Centre for Food Policy at Thames Valley University

Joe Nasr, author of Urban Agricultrue: Food, Jobs and Sustainable Cities,

Fritz Haeg, author of Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn,

Ian Collingwood, Middlesborough Council regeneration, and lead on the Middlesborough Urban Farming project.

June Komisar, Assistant Professor, Department of Architectural Science, Ryerson University

This event follows on from the Sustain report Edible Cities (downloadable from, detailing the visit of London officials to urban agriculture projects kindly supported by the US Embassy.

The conference inlcuded an unexpected appearance from London's major Boris Johnson who publicly announced his support for urban agriculture projects in the capital.


City Harvest: The City Harvest website collects information on the wide range of benefits associated with urban agriculture, aiming to strengthen the movement in the UK and across the globe.

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