Seeds in the City

Urban Farming in Havana

Richard Phinney

Richard Phinney
Camera, Writer, Director

UK-Based Canadian journalist and documentary maker who specializes in international issues under-represented in mainstream media in North America and Europe and for international organizations.

Steven-032Steven Hunt
Producer, Editor

Seeds in the City tells the remarkable story of the people of Havana, Cuba who have pulled themselves back from the brink of disaster.

Faced with food shortages and widespread hunger, city dwellers began growing food on rooftops, in schoolyards, and in front of office buildings. Now there are thousands of urban farms in a city better known for its music, dance and nightlife.

Distributed through Journeyman Pictures

The Urban Farm Transformation

During the worst of the food crisis in the early 1990s, many Cuban families began growing food on their own initiative. However, there is no doubt that the growth of farming in Havana is due to the commitment of the Cuban government. Nothing much happens in Cuba without it being carefully overseen by the State, and urban agriculture is no exception.

Now there are 20,000 urban farms in a city better known for its music, dance and nightlife. Yet more than a million tons of food is produced within the city limits, about half of Havana’s nutritional requirements.

Most of it is organic.

The green revolution has changed communist Cuba in other ways, leading to the legalization of food markets and small businesses.

Festivals

Seeds in the City was chosen to be part of the Telluride World Tour which takes films with the best audience responses at the Telluride Mountain Film Festival on a tour of cities in North America and Australia.

One World Film Festival – Ottawa (2005)
International Film Festival – Barcelona (2007)

Awards

Seeds in the City received special jury recognition at CinéUrbana of the UN-Habitat Forum (2006).

Website

A companion website to the film was developed but is now archived.