Food in the city: Exploring urban food sources in Gaborone, Botswana

Lane, Katherine A.
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University of Guelph

Gaborone, Botswana has demonstrated a steady growth rate since independence, providing an excellent case study for this study. Rapid urban growth in Southern Africa, coupled with globalization and changes in cultural norms and preferences, has created new dimensions to how individuals can, and choose to, access food in the city. Additionally, urbanization often creates national food deficits and hence a need to secure external food supply networks. This is certainly the case in Gaborone, as importing foodstuffs is necessary to feed their growing urban population. Little is known about the food sources available to urban dwellers or how they play a role in the availability and access of foodstuffs in cities. Food security studies have traditionally been focussed in rural areas, with much of the current literature on food sourcing being rather fragmented - this research examines all urban food sources as an integrated, comprehensive system for the purpose of discovering how food "works" in cities.

Gaborone, Botswana, food access, urbanization, food deficits, external food supply network, foodstuffs, urban dwellers