Food Shed Assessment for Urbanizing Blocks in a Metropolitan Region

Project Type: 
M. Tech Project -II (TD 696)
Urbanization is a driver of development, accompanied by severe environmental implications, transforming the quality and challenging the availability of various environmental resources. Land, being one of these resources which support the basic needs of any settlement, undergoes modification due to the spatial expansion caused in the form of built to un-built land use change. About 1/4th of our city expansions currently stand on un-built land that was formerly under cultivation. Unmonitored agricultural to non-agricultural land conversions not just negatively impact the agricultural production, cropping patterns, employment and availability of arable land, but also challenge the regional food self-reliance and balance in the longer run. The lack of consideration of the spatial aspect our food systems leaves the local food shed potential unexplored, causing longer food chains, higher food miles, increasing the volatility of our staple food prices. Performing a food shed assessment is necessary to evaluate and understand the potential and self-reliance of our rapidly urbanizing settlements which tend to subsume highly productive croplands in peri-urban and rural areas, . This study provides a methodology for conducting food shed assessment for Indian context and demonstrates it with the example of Pune region.