Urban agriculture in Havana – evidence from empirical research
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The aim of this article is to indicate the features of contemporary urban agriculture present in the contiguously built-up areas of Havana. Using an exploratory and classification approach, the authors draw on fieldwork and a prior analysis of satellite and aerial imagery, first to characterize the spatial distribution of urban gardens and then to point to their main intrinsic features, including the methods and organization of production and the functions performed. The research conducted shows that urban agriculture is distributed across the city in an uneven fashion, with the main concentration in districts of lower-density urban construction, which reflects the availability of land resources intentionally left between buildings by modernist planners. The most common production technique applied is organopónico, or organoponics. However, the material commonly used to construct the bordering walls is asbestos, which may pose a significant threat for both producers and consumers. Two case studies are analyzed to exemplify different approaches to organic food production.
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