Vive Le Canada

World Food Supply
Date: Tuesday, January 27 2009
Topic:


Recent falls in food prices are no more than a temporary reprieve and are set to resume their upward trend once the world emerges from the current economic downturn.



This is one of the conclusions of a new Chatham House report, The Feeding of the Nine Billion: Global Food Security for the 21st Century, which urges policymakers to start planning now for a future 'food crunch'.



The report assesses the outlook for global food supply in a long term context of expanding population, increasing affluence, climate change concerns and growing resource scarcity.



The report's author, Alex Evans, says:



'The 20th century Green Revolution made incredible advances in improving crop yields. Now, we need a 21st century Green Revolution to repeat that success. Although enough food is produced today to feed everyone, nearly a billion people are undernourished - about the same number as are overweight.






Recent falls in food prices are no more than a temporary reprieve and are set to resume their upward trend once the world emerges from the current economic downturn.



This is one of the conclusions of a new Chatham House report, The Feeding of the Nine Billion: Global Food Security for the 21st Century, which urges policymakers to start planning now for a future 'food crunch'.



The report assesses the outlook for global food supply in a long term context of expanding population, increasing affluence, climate change concerns and growing resource scarcity.



The report's author, Alex Evans, says:



'The 20th century Green Revolution made incredible advances in improving crop yields. Now, we need a 21st century Green Revolution to repeat that success. Although enough food is produced today to feed everyone, nearly a billion people are undernourished - about the same number as are overweight.



'Food supply will have to grow by 50% by 2030 to meet projected demand but climate change, water scarcity and competition for land will make it much harder to achieve this demanding target. A return to high oil prices will also increase food prices, as more crops are converted into bio-fuels.'



The report recommends investing more in agriculture, with a focus on small farmers; improving importer countries' security of supply through changes to trade rules; and a new 'International Energy Agency For Food' to manage a global system of food reserves and help protect against future price spikes.



Sam Bickersteth, Head of Programme Policy at Oxfam, said: 'This report should act as a wake-up call for all those who believe that the food crisis of the last two years is over. World leaders have a window of opportunity to act to prevent a further escalation of the crisis. They must produce coordinated action now and reverse decades of under-investment in agriculture to prevent millions more people falling into hunger.'

 

http://www.chathamhouse.org.uk/publications/papers/view/-/id/694/

 









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