Carrot City: Urban Agriculture

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Urban farming isn't new, but some businesses are now turning to agriculture for profit in the five boroughs. June Komisar, an architect and associate professor in the Department of Architectural Science at Ryerson University, and co-author of Carrot City: Creating Places for Urban Agriculture, talks about the reality of urban agriculture in cities like New York along with Viraj Puri, co-founder and CEO of Gotham Greens, a new agricultural business from Brooklyn.


June Komisar and Viraj Puri

Comments [12]


People... they are not using contaminated soil. it is ridiculous to wonder about pollution. The plants are breathing the same exact air that you do every single day. As far as taste - if anyone has grown a backyard tomato they know it tastes better than the ones you buy in a store.

Apr. 06 2012 04:49 PM

So no regulations at all

Sep. 20 2011 10:42 PM
Paul from White Plains

The segment put me in mind of a wonderful short story: "Antaeus," by Borden Deal.

Sep. 20 2011 02:22 PM
Shana Darabie from Clinton Hill, Brooklyn

Kevin, you may as well say that all the fashion companies in the Fashion District, all the financial businesses on Wall Street, Coney Island, the Zoos and just about any business that creates local jobs will reduce affordable housing. It is impossible for the city of New York to only have housing. We need more jobs and we need to grow more food locally. The only thing that makes food not grown locally more affordable is government subsidies and generally that is food of lower quality and less nutritional value. Besides, a lot of these companies are developing roof gardens (like Brooklyn Grange Farm in Long Island City), how many people do you know that live on roofs.

Sep. 20 2011 11:30 AM
el from UES

What types of fruits and vegetables do you sell?

Sep. 20 2011 10:59 AM
Henry from Brooklyn

Can greenhouses in shipping containers on vacant lots work economically?

Sep. 20 2011 10:57 AM
Christine Bridges

Actually, Zabar's Eli's Vinegar factory is on the upper east side in the 90's between first and York

Sep. 20 2011 10:56 AM
tom from manhattan

vinegar factory on E 91 St. has a green house on it's roof

Sep. 20 2011 10:56 AM

Does taking up space to grow in the city result in decreased affordable housing for those of us who can't pay $4 for a bag of greens?

Sep. 20 2011 10:56 AM
Joe from NYC

I'm with Simpmovblw. The answer your guests provided was not satisfactory. Is urban and rooftop grown food tested? NYC has some of the most polluted air in the nation, and alot of industrial pollution in the ground.

Sep. 20 2011 10:56 AM
katherine from Bushwick, Brooklyn

The Onderdonk House in Bushwick/Ridgewood is a great example of reclaiming the rich history of urban agriculture in the city. The house was built in 1709, and was just recently turned back into a working farm thanks to renewed interest in the neighborhood and the place--they have chickens and amazing vegetable gardens on about 3 acres of lush land right on Flushing Avenue--surrounded by factories and warehouses.

Sep. 20 2011 10:55 AM

How do eaters know the food is not coated in city- related toxins? Any rules around this, including organic or nonorganic? Personally I group them in the same category as foreign grown food, ie big unknown

Sep. 20 2011 08:47 AM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.