Where: Maribor, Slovenia
Who: Daniela Patti
With whom: The City of Maribor
How: Urban Soil 4 Food is an Urban Innovative Actions project in Maribor, focusing on the establishment of urban soil based economy circles to increase local food self-sufficiency and minimize environmental footprint.
The main goal of the project is to use the City’s waste to produce new products and food using an innovative process that involves the production of urban soil, with an ultimate goal of increasing local food self-sufficiency and minimizing the environmental footprint of the City of Maribor.
Urban Soil 4 Food will seek to produce different types of soil for use in urban agriculture, parks, roadworks and constructions.
It will also produce energy to be used in the operation of soil production, establish new urban gardens, decrease greenhouse emissions, and enable a circular economy that will support social innovation projects, promote workshops and provide financial support for SMEs working in the field of circular economy.
The aim is developing safe and certified soil with the by-production of energy (through using technology of fermentation and pyrolysis).
A pilot system for urban soil production will be established, as will four urban gardens (to make use of the urban soil produced). The food circle will turn some currently unused Municipality land into urban community gardens, where agricultural activity will take place, ending with the establishment of an urban food label.
The open innovation circle will establish an agri-living lab to develop and test innovative pilot concepts, such as urban flowers for urban bees, micro urban gardening and urban soil rehabilitation, while simultaneously supporting innovative start-ups working in the field of circular economy.
Maribor is the second largest city in Slovenia with 111.500 inhabitants spread across 147,5 km² of land.
52% of the food produced is either lost or wasted somewhere along the food chain.
31% of Slovenia’s demand for fruits and vegetables are produced locally.
The quality of nutrients in produced food is on a decline, with 55% less potassium in tomatoes compared to the 1950s, and 78% less iron in cucumbers.
The open innovation circle will establish an agri-living lab to develop and test innovative pilot concepts, such as urban flowers for urban bees, micro urban gardening and urban soil rehabilitation, while simultaneously supporting innovative start-ups working in the field of circular economy. The knowledge circle will share the knowledge stemming from the project to other cities in Slovenia and in the EU, ending with development of certificates and patents in order to bring urban soil technology to the international level.
Urban Food 4 Soil is a UIA initiative. Daniela Patti supports the network and the development of the project as an expert.
For more information on the project and how Eutropian has acted as a consultant in aiding circular economy and urban agriculture producsion, please reach out to her directly: