In Order To Feed Everyone in 2050, We Have To Stop Wasting Food And Eating Meat

According to a study released by the World Resources Institute, we need to start right now.

(© Picture by Richard Levine/Corbis via Getty Images)

To meet the challenge to feed 10 billion people in 2050, humankind will have to fight food waste, reduce its meat consumption and rise farm productivity, all while producing fewer greenhouse gases.

At least that is what reveals the study made by the American think tank World Resources Institute (WRI) in collaboration with the Global Bank, the UN, and two French research institutes, the Cirad and Inra.

Released on December 5, the rapport draws formal conclusions: there is no miracle cure which will allow us to feed the global population in 30 years without aggravating poverty and the damages to the planet.

It prescribes major changes for our food system that should be implemented as soon as possible. According to the WRI, global demand for food should rise by 50% in 2050 while the demand for food of animal origin (meat, dairy products, and eggs) should rise by almost 70%.

Yet today, hundreds of million people are already suffering from hunger, the agricultural sector uses around half of the land in the world and generates a quarter of greenhouse gas.

In order to face this situation, the authors of the study suggest a list of measures which, led simultaneously, would allow humankind to feed the global population sustainably.

The Study Recommends Rising Fish Production

Their first recommendation is to reduce the demand by limiting food waste, but also by eating less ruminant meat and using culture to feed humans and animals instead of biofuels.

Simultaneously, the productivity of cultures and livestock should reach historically higher levels, but by using the same surface area, as deforestation needs to stop. Bogs and degraded lands also need to be rehabilitated.

Finally, the WRI suggests raising the fish production by upgrading aquaculture and handling wild fishing. It will also be necessary to make the best use of emerging technologies and innovating agricultural practices to reduce the greenhouse gas emission related to agriculture according to the thing thank.

In 2010, agriculture and land-use changes represented around 25% of the global emissions (12 gigatons of CO2 per year), underlines WRI, which estimates that the world can reduce the emissions from the agriculture by two third, hence 4GT of CO2 by 2050, by following its recommendations.

Konbini news with AFP

By Clothilde Bru, published on 05/12/2018