Urban Greenhouse Talks

‘Exploring the world of urban farming’

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Exploring the world of Urban Farming

‘Urban Greenhouse Talks’ explores the world of urban farming through the lens of the Urban Greenhouse Challenge#3, an international student competition organised by Wageningen University & Research.

The series focuses on the question of how feeding our cities can become more sustainable and socially inclusive. By interviewing a wide range of experts who shape the way we grow food in the cities, the series strives to give the audience an overview of current trends and developments, the future outlook for the sector and practical tips for the participants in the Challenge. 


Tuesday Jul 05, 2022

On the occasion of the Grand Finals of the 3rd Edition of the Urban Greenhouse Challenge, EatThis. together with Paprika Tasty Radio made a 2-hour live radioshow precedin the award ceremony on June 29. Presenters Ed Smit and Renee Snijders interviewed various teams (including winner Lettus Design!), jury members and previous participants. The show and this last podcast is a nice recap of the Challenge.
The third edition of the Challenge started in November 2021 with 30 student teams from 70 Universities in 20 countries joining in. After the first selection, 20 teams made it to the second round where they received coaching and advice from over 30 partners supporting the Challenge. Ten teams were selected for the finals, including teams from Colombia, the USA, Peru, China and the Netherlands.
This was the last edition of the Urban Greenhouse Challenge, an international and interdisciplinary student competition initiated in 2018 by the Wageningen University & Research with the aim of catalysing innovation in the realm of urban farming. The Challenge inspired many young minds to rethink the way we produce food in the cities and influenced their future career choices. It brought students in contact with leading companies in the horticultural sector and gave them a chance to learn and inspire one another.

Tuesday Jun 07, 2022

For this 4th and final episode in this series, presenters Renee Snijders and Ed Smit interview the UGC selection committee on how they perceive the Urban Greenhouse Challenge, what they think of the proposals and how they envision the future of urban farming in Washington D.C. or more specifically East Capitol Urban Farm, the site of this social impact edition. What’s in store for the winning proposal and how can it become reality and a true life changing project for the local residents in Ward 7?The selection committee includes Kathy Dixon, Principal at K. Dixon Architecture; Eric Harris, PhD student at UDC; Commissioner Antawan Holmes and Jimell Sanders, President of the Deanwood Citizens Association.

Monday May 02, 2022

For this 3rd episode, we are pleased that Art van Rijn, CEO of Artechno, Sandro van Kouteren, CEO of Parus Europe and Manuel Oomen, business development manager at Hawthorne Gardening Company are joining us to focus on the technical environment of the urban farm. What do you need to make your production facility successful?Our guests all work in professional horticulture and/or urban/vertical farming. During this podcast we pick their brains and discuss how a new project can be set up and how to make it socially sustainable, but also technologically and financially feasible. 

Monday Mar 07, 2022

‘Urban Greenhouse Talks’ returns with its lens turned to sustainable urban development. Three prominent women within this sector draw examples from their fruitful careers to explore opportunities and challenges in realising urban farming projects all over the world. 
Meiny Prins, CEO of Priva, initiator of the Sustainable Urban Delta programme and one of the Inspiring Fifty The Netherlands shares her vision on sustainable urban development and reflects on the role that urban farming can play in the future. To support her point, Manila de Iuliis, Chief Urban Development Officer of World of Walas presents already existing examples of integrating food production into urban infrastructure. Finally, Tiffany Tsui, CSO of Vertical Farm Institute discusses the most important considerations related to current regulatory context.
Hosts Renee Snijders and Ed Smith facilitate discussion on the financial feasibility of urban farming and the role that various actors can play.

Monday Feb 14, 2022

In this episode, presenters Renee Snijders and Ed Smit look back at the origins of the Urban Greenhouse Challenge and examine how urban farming has changed in the last 10 years.
They interview the godfather of the competition, Prof. Gert Spaargaren (WUR), the ‘brain’ behind the third, social-impact edition, Dr. Sigrid Wertheim-Heck (WUR) and Henry Gordon Smith, who is CEO and founder of Agritecture (one of the partners of the Challenge). 
The guests will discuss the role of food innovation in relation to social innovation and the value of local communities as part of new advancements in the sector. “Greenhouses need to match the society,” points out Dr.Wertheim-Heck, an argument supported by Prof. Spaargaren’s observation that “the food agenda should follow the social agenda.” Henry Gordon-Smith will share examples of urban farming projects that successfully meet social needs. 

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