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The urban farms that grow half of the vegetables eaten in Cape Town, South Africa

Sunday, October 23, 2016 6:50
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The Philippi Horticultural Area is a 20-minute drive from the city centre and supplies half of Cape Town’s vegetables

A densely populated area in Cape Town, the Cape Flats is home to townships, informal settlements and century-old neighourhoods.

By Helen Sullivan
How We Made It In Africa
12 October 2016


These days the PHA farmers face more formidable opponents than horses. Consol Glass has applied for a mining licence, looking to dig up valuable silica sand, and a property developer has proposed a scheme made up of commercial housing, a shopping centre and private prison on land currently used for farming. Sonday says that this development would destroy a third of the PHA’s most productive land.

Not only would this put an end to much of the area’s food production, but as the farms are the last feeder area for the aquifer, it would limit the city’s water supply and could lead to flooding. To build on the land, the potable water below ground needs to be filled with rubble to create a foundation. It would also affect more than 4,000 farming jobs.

This is where our guide comes in. The PHA Food and Farming Campaign, which Sonday leads, is fighting to stop development, mining or prospecting in the area.

Sonday has a long history with Philippi. His parents and grandparents were from the area, where Sonday, too, was born. The family was relocated when their neighbourhood was declared “white” by the Apartheid government.

Read the complete article here.


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