This paper summarises work attempting to answer two apparently simple questions: Can urban agriculture reduce urban poverty? And, if it can, in what ways can poverty be reduced? It also explores the role of value chain analysis in understanding better the role of urban agriculture.

This briefing paper synthesises recent debates, focusing on socio-economic factors. To what extent were biofuels to blame for the food price spike? What opportunities do biofuels offer for the poorest farmers in the developing world? What are their socio-environmental risks? The paper concludes with policy recommendations to reduce the risk and maximise the opportunities