Urban agriculture is a multifaceted concept that is heavily influenced by local conditions and socioeconomic factors. In the developed world, it has been viewed as a result of the environmental movement and a beneficial activity for the upper class. Nevertheless, its economic contributions to food production, particularly in peri-urban areas, can be quite substantial. Japan provides an interesting case study for examining the role of urban agriculture in urban planning and food security. A major issue with urban agriculture is the loss of agricultural land in urban and peri-urban areas.
In London, around 10% of the population visits urban farms each year, which have been established as educational centers. The Agricultural Land (Plots) Leasing Act 1989 enabled farmers to rent land for gardening purposes, and in 1998, around 200,000 people were Shimin Noen holders. Although most food grown in urban areas poses minimal risk, if grown near roads, risks will increase for vulnerable groups such as the elderly and young people. The Small Properties and Appropriations Act 1908 (and subsequent related legislation) requires districts in England and Wales to provide a sufficient number of plots for their constituents, but this does not apply to inner London districts. Cadmium contamination in food and agricultural soils began to be regulated in the 1970s, but Japanese levels were still the highest in East and Southeast Asia in the 1990s.
The approach taken is to continue supporting existing commercial agricultural sectors in regional cities located outside state or territory capitals. The environmental movement of the 1970s also sparked enthusiasm for urban agriculture in Australia. However, commercial agricultural production in metropolitan areas had already begun to decline in the 1950s. Today, most agriculture in the Valley is conducted in greenhouses and is mostly hydroponic. Air pollution and exposure of young children to organophosphate pesticides in an agricultural community in Japan is also a concern. To guarantee that existing agricultural land is not displaced by new developments or other uses related to urban farming initiatives in London, it is essential to study more about the opportunities and challenges of urban agriculture from different perspectives.
It is also important to consider regulations that protect agricultural land from being taken away from farmers. Finally, it is critical to monitor air pollution levels and ensure that vulnerable groups are not exposed to hazardous substances.