8. What is the 'loop'? - Week 4, October 22-25

What does the food production cycle consist of?


I was really rooting for transportation because I was inspired by a vision for a world with no cars. However, working on the challenge of food transportation has potential for more solutions upstream so now I'm going to start researching and considering the following:

  1. Define the 'loop' - what are the steps required to get food to cities?

  2. Conduct research on the various aspects of that loop (why can't we do agriculture in cities? why can't all food be grown locally? why do we need to use trucks vs. trains vs. planes vs. ships for food transport? which is the most efficient? how is food wasted in cities? how is food sold in cities?)... immerse myself in the context so i can better understand/identify opportunities for innovating on an existing process.

  3. Ideate potential interventions at different points in the loop to present to my group next Friday.


Our group has talked extensively about "closing the loop," and I don't really know what that means. From my research so far, I understand the excessive amounts of waste that go into food production, especially for cities. But that's about it.

So, I looked into this concept of "closed loop food production" in order to better understand the steps involved (and opportunities for innovation) in growing and getting food to a city.

This research has shown me the various opportunities for innovation in the food production cycle. However, what I've seen so far is contextualised in that core/periphery paradigm where food is grown outside of the city and brought in towards the center. While attempts at things like community gardens are great, and can provide a lot of educational benefits, they do not have the scale needed to provide food for an entire city. Furthermore, given that so much pollution occurs during transportation, one solution I'm leaning towards is to grow food more locally.