Can We Feed the World?
Despite recent agricultural advancements, chronic hunger remains pervasive, particularly in developing countries. Only by taking concerted action to bolster innovation, strengthen market linkages, support smallholder farmers, and encourage visionary political leadership, can we guarantee food security for all.
LONDON – In the 1960’s, the Green Revolution – which included the development of high-yielding crop varieties, the expansion of irrigation infrastructure, and the distribution of modern fertilizers and pesticides to developing-country farmers – bolstered agricultural production worldwide. But chronic hunger remains pervasive, particularly in developing countries, which are affected most by crop shortages and food-price volatility.
By 2050, the global human population is expected to exceed nine billion. Achieving food security means ensuring that all people have consistent, affordable access to the right nutrients, despite land and water limitations, climate change, and the growing prevalence of resource-intensive Western-style diets that accompany rising incomes.
Surmounting these challenges will not be easy. But, by taking concerted action to encourage innovation, strengthen market linkages, and support smallholder farmers and women, developing countries can build productive, stable, resilient, and equitable agricultural sectors, achieve sustainable economic growth, and guarantee food security for all.
We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.
To continue reading, subscribe now.
Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.
Already have an account or want to create one to read two commentaries for free? Log in