Charlotte Singer, Robin G. Brumfield



An Economic Analysis of Urban Agriculture

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local food, locavore, urban agriculture, urban farming, social business, social capital, urban greenhouse


As consumers increasingly look to eat locally produced food, for reasons such as to support the local economy, to protect the environment, and to understand better where food is coming from; urban agriculture is becoming a growing trend but with little research done about its cost effectiveness. This study examines the economics of urban agriculture, in particular looking at the business models urban greenhouses adapt to be profitable. By analyzing literature and business models of existing, successful urban greenhouses, we determine trends within the sustaining businesses. We find that urban greenhouses typically either target niche markets, adapt a social business model, or utilize abandoned or low cost land to make a profit. While there is still work to be done to develop a robust financial analysis of these businesses, these trends of successful greenhouses will inform prospective urban greenhouse owners of possible routes to success.

Cite this paper

Charlotte Singer, Robin G. Brumfield. (2017) An Economic Analysis of Urban Agriculture. International Journal of Agricultural Science, 2, 42-45