Rising demand 'requires 70% increase in agriculture'
15 June 2011
Posted by Michelle Devonshire
Global agricultural output needs to grow by 70 per cent in order to meet projected levels of demand by 2050.
This is according to a new book on farming from the United Nations, which warns that the need for food is rising around the world and may outstrip supply unless more environmentally-friendly and efficient forms of agriculture are introduced.
With more people moving from the countryside into urban areas, the international agency's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has declared the number of people in built-up parts of the world will climb from 50 per cent to 70 per cent by 2050.
In addition, there is an anticipated surge in population numbers of one-third to 9.2 billion over the next four decades, placing additional pressure on farmers to boost yields and raising food prices.
Land in many regions remains tight and solutions are needed to reduce the water and energy requirements associated with food production, the book states.
The FAO has launched a new initiative dubbed 'Save and Grow', which is intended to produce more sustainable crops in greater volumes by assisting smaller farmers in the developing world in particular by helping them in creating healthy agro-ecosystems.