UK Report: World Needs Global Food System Overhaul
January 31, 2011
The world needs fundamental changes to the global food system to feed the expanding population, according to a British government report on how to feed the planet until 2050, reports the Associated Foreign Press. Governments must take action to change dietary habits, cut waste, reduce subsidies and embrace genetically modified food, said the "Global Food and Farming Futures" report. The study led by Professor John Beddington, the British government''s chief scientific adviser, said that with the global population forecast to reach nine billion in 40 years'' time, radical changes were needed to a system already struggling to feed the existing population. The report found that the threat of hunger could increase, saying that current efforts were already stalling and food prices could rise substantially over the next 40 years. The global food system is already living beyond its means, consuming resources faster than they can be replenished, it said. Substantial changes to water and energy use and addressing climate change are needed to bring about sustainability, the report found. The report also said that new technologies such as genetic modification, cloned livestock and nanotechnology "should not be excluded a priori on ethical or moral grounds" and have the potential to be "very valuable for the poorest people in low-income countries".