At present, agriculture is estimated to be the driver of around 80% of deforestation and 70% of freshwater resource usage worldwide. Because of pollution and depletion of water resources, 28% of agriculture (including 58% of irrigated cropland) already takes place in water-stressed regions. Moreover, nearly 70% of all agricultural land globally is considered degraded: eroded or robbed of its nutrients by poor land management and rapidly losing its ability to provide sufficient food to local and far-flung populations. Population and economic growth brings an increased use of these natural resources, creating greater pressure on food systems and the land, water, and energy required to grow food. Since the world’s population is projected to reach 9.2 billion people by 2050, sustainable solutions need to be found. In addition, 66% of the world’s population is expected to live in cities by 2030. The increase of diverse cultural backgrounds and skill sets in big cities is creating an emerging middle class that demands a greater choice of foods and flavors.
Published: 5 Jul 2018