Knowledge for better food systems

Showing results for: Horticulture and fruit trees

20 August 2018

These two books, edited by Debashis Mandal, Amritesh C. Shukla and Mohammed Wasim Siddiqui, outline current trends in research on sustainable horticulture. Volume 1 covers diversity, production, and crop improvement while Volume 2 covers food, health, and nutrition.

Image: olle svensson, avocado, Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic
4 June 2018

Some avocado plantation owners in Chile are illegally diverting water from rivers and leaving local villagers without enough water, according to a feature in the Guardian. Demand for avocados has increased by 27% in the UK in the last year. Activist Veronica Vilches claimed that local people are getting sick because of the lack of water, while activist Rodrigo Mundaca says that the water provided to resident by trucks is of poor quality.

26 May 2018

Over two billion people in developing countries are smallholder farmers and often depend on pollinators, according to this report by the UK Collaborative on Development Sciences. The report finds that insufficient pollination has already been found across many crops in the developing world, which could negatively affect cash crops (such as coffee and cocoa) and intake of nutritious foods such as fruit and nuts. The report points to a lack of data on pollinators in developing countries, and calls for further research, education programmes and sustainable development projects incorporating bee-keeping.

Image: Francish7, Tasty seasonal African Plums - known locally as Safu - in Basankusu, Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported
26 May 2018

A recent paper by FCRN member Roger Leakey of the International Tree Foundation explores the possibility of smallholder farms in Africa using trees and indigenous crops to provide many environmental, social and economic benefits.

Victor Camilo, Flickr, Creative Commons License 2.0
8 August 2016

The DNA of Pseudocercospora fijiensis, the fungus that causes the black Sigatoka disease in bananas, has been sequenced and assembled in an attempt to find means of disease control. The black Sigatoka disease occurs across the tropics and is responsible for huge banana yield losses. In addition, it can cause the fruit to ripen prematurely, which stops exports of the crop. The Cavendish banana, the clonal type of bananas most consumers in the west eat is especially vulnerable to the black Sigatoka fungi.

20 April 2016

This report produced by Food Research Collaboration (FRC) outlines the horticulture sector’s potential to create a shift towards healthier diets in the UK by contributing to overall fruit and vegetable consumption.

20 April 2016

This study looks into how residential landscapes in Chicago, USA, which constitute the largest single urban land use, benefit ecosystems. It argues that even though we often don’t associate modern urban areas with healthy ecosystems, home gardens in urban landscapes can contribute to important ecosystem services.

18 June 2015

The Mediterranean diet is seeing a shift away from traditional diets, threatening health and the environment, say the FAO and the International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) in a new report.

19 April 2015

This brief argues that rooftop gardens in cities could supply cities with more than three quarters of their vegetable requirements. The brief from the European Commission is based on evidence from a case study from Bologna, Italy.

2 October 2014

Advocates of the alternative food movement often insist that food is our "common ground" – that through the very basic human need to eat, we all become entwined in a network of mutual solidarity. In this book, the author explores the contradictions and shortcomings of alternative food activism by examining specific endeavours of the movement through various lenses of social difference – including class, race, gender, and age.

9 February 2012

Poorer families in Britain have cut the amount of fruit and vegetables they buy by almost a third to consume little over half the recommended five portions per day. Households in the lowest income bracket consistently bought smaller and smaller quantities of fruit and vegetables between 2006 and 2010, the most recent year for figures released by DEFRA.

28 November 2011

The December edition of the journal Nutrition Bulletin, published by the British Nutrition Foundation, examines the complex nutrition and health factors associated with the challenge of achieving a sustainable and secure food supply.

6 February 2009

This report builds upon the Growing food in cities report. Whereas the emphasis of Growing food in cities was very much on the potential benefits of urban agriculture, this report focuses on what the actual benefits have been, and on the feasibility of developing food growing activities further, given London's specific social, economic and environmental context.

13 November 2008

On 4 November 2008, the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, and Rosie Boycott, Chair of London Food, launched a scheme to turn 2,012 pieces of land into thriving green spaces to grow food by 2012. The Capital Growth project aims to identify suitable patches of land around London and offer financial and practical support to groups of enthusiastic gardeners or organisations who want to grow food for themselves and for the local community.