Not only because despite all the encouraging developments regarding urban agriculture, the amount produced would never suffice to feed the entire urban population. Pointing to cities like Beijing in China, Gerda Verburg, UN Assistant Secretary-General and Coordinator of the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement, noted that factors such as air pollution were jeopardising the production of healthy food. Moreover, supplying the urban population with food offered huge opportunities for small-scale farmers.

Rodney Mushongachiware, Linkage Advisor of the Agricultural Partnerships Trust (APT) presented an example in this context. In Zimbabwe, a country with 15.6 million inhabitants, an urban population share of 32.4 per cent and a 2.3 per cent annual urbanisation growth rate, that is hit by periodic droughts and suffers from food insecurity, about 70 per cent of the population derive livelihoods from agriculture. In spite of this, most horticulture and fruits are imported from South Africa, also because the quality of the imported goods is valued more highly than that of goods produced domestically.