Urban farming is a rapidly expanding industry in East London, with the population growth showing the need for sustainable agricultural practices. However, for urban agriculture to be successful, it is essential that people living nearby view and accept it positively. This article will explore the current issues and economic aspects of urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA) in East London, as well as how farmers can market their products and services to succeed. Concept mapping can uncover cognitive structures related to urban agriculture and show the differences between people with respect to their knowledge structures.
For instance, some consumers may perceive products from urban farms as cheaper, while others may view them as more expensive. By doing so, recommendations can be made to stakeholders for the successful integration of sustainable urban agriculture. Urban farms can promote their products and services through on-farm sales, a box delivery system, farmers markets, and other outlets. It is important to note that farmers markets account for 52% of turnover.
Additionally, urban farms should strive for high productivity, with automated and hydroponic practices on peat-based substrates and artificial fertilizers. The success of urban agriculture is based on the positive perception of those who live nearby. Therefore, it is important to investigate how consumers perceive urban agriculture and assess whether they would accept this form of commercial agriculture close to their place of residence. This will help farmers understand how to market their products and services in order to succeed.