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The 2050 Food Security Challenge

Decent Essays
The 2050 Food Security Challenge, is one of the most widely known and concerning issues of the 21st century due to its vast potential of impacting the entire earth. In an analysis titled “Solutions for a Cultivated Planet,” Foley et al. (2011) note that it as “one of the greatest challenges of the twenty-first century” (p. 1). In summary, the issue addresses the need for massive expansion of food production in order to accommodate our ever-growing population. By 2050, the world population is expected to reach 9-10 billion people, an increase of approximately 35% in 33 years (FAO, p. 2). As a result, a large increase in food production is required, while using less land, less water, decreasing the overall environmental impact, improving…show more content…
83-84). Currently certified organic land is approximately 37 million hectares or 91.4 million acres, accounting for 0.9% of all agricultural land (Niggli, 2014, p. 84).
Although relatively small in comparison to conventional farming, Niggli emphasises the importance of organic production in feeding the growing population. Overall, he supports his claim with three major points; the lower environmental impacts, the environmental benefits and the potential for growth. Niggli (2014) begins by stressing the multi-functionality of organic production and states, “Organic agriculture produces both commodity and non-commodity outputs and addresses ethical concerns such as animal welfare and the livelihoods of farmers” (p. 84). He continues by discussing the how organic production allows for natural growth and biodiversity due to regular crop rotation, as well as restrictions on pesticides and herbicides. Additionally, bans on chemical fertilizers decrease nitrogen leaches by 35-65%, all of which help maintain soil and drinking water quality (Niggli, 2014, p.84). In general, the natural methods that are pursued through organic production have a significantly lower environmental impact.
In addition to the lowered environmental impact, Niggli discusses the environmental benefits.
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