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Page added on November 22, 2011

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Global food demand could double by 2050


A new studyfrom the University of Minnesota projects that global food demand could double by 2050.

That’s despite the fact the world’s population is forecast to grow by less than 30 percent.

Jason Hill, a professor at the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment, said as people in developing countries get wealthier and eat more meat, demand for grain to feed livestock will continue to rise.

Hill said farmers in the developing world can meet that demand by using more fertilizer and water. He said more intensive farming can be environmentally friendly as long as farmers don’t try to squeeze every last bit of grain out of each acre.

“If you intensify slightly or intensify somewhat, you can really take advantage of the yield response of crops to the slight change in inputs,” Hill said. “It’s really that last bushel that’s really responsible for most of the environmental damage that’s associated with agriculture.”

More intensive farming is less damaging to the environment than clearing more land, he said.

The study was funded by the National Science Foundation.

Minnesota Public Radio

3 Comments on "Global food demand could double by 2050"

  1. Kenz300 on Tue, 22nd Nov 2011 5:44 pm 

    Too many people and too few resources. The world added a billion people in the last 12 years and continues to grow. This is not sustainable. We have a food crisis, a water crisis, an oil crisis, a financial crisis and a jobs crisis. Every problem is made harder to solve with an ever growing population.

  2. Analoggod on Tue, 22nd Nov 2011 6:54 pm 

    hush with such vulgar speech!The ship is unsinkable.Technology and innovation will continue to allow us to congratulate ourselves on being masters of the universe,4EVA————-Peak Oil such foolish CrAzY talk.GET A JOB!!!

  3. BillT on Wed, 23rd Nov 2011 1:50 am 

    The above is only a projection of current statistics. Money growth (purchasing power)is not going to increase. There will not be 10 billion people on the Earth in 2050. There may be far fewer than today. Why? Wars, famine, disease.

    We have reached and passed the holding capacity of the earth. Like any species that does that, Mother Nature culls the herd, flock, etc by natural means. When food resources get scarce, men go to war to get more. Wars today can mean the death of millions in a short time. Combined with disease and famine, billions will die off over the next few decades and few will be born and live to grow up.

    Many think that ‘technology’ will save us. But, ‘technology’ has always been supported by increasingly plentiful energy at cheap prices. Oil has made most of the ‘techno advances’ possible in the last century. From mining the minerals to make electronics to sending satellites into orbit to allow the internet. None would have happened without oil. When the Age of Petroleum finally ends, so will most technology.

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