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Food Production: Africa as top global contributor

Researchers have indicated that it may be possible to feed 3 billion extra people without using additional land and water. The study has been published in the Journal Science and features the work of researchers from the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment.
According to the report, the biggest opportunities for boosting food production lie in Africa. Six countries to focus on, besides those of Africa, in order to make agriculture more sustainable include India, China, Brazil, Indonesia, the United States, Pakistan and Europe.
The report explored 17 key crops that produce 86 percent of the world’s crop calories and account for most irrigation and fertilizer consumption. It is necessary to begin making moves towards boosting food production because the
Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) says food production needs to rise by 60 percent to adequately feed a projected global population of more than 9.5 billion people by the middle of the 21st century.
The key recommendations of the report are to produce more food on existing farmland by increasing yields, reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture, use less nutrients and water to grow crops, feed fewer crops to animals as fodder and cut food waste.
“By focusing on areas, crops and practices with the most to be gained, companies, governments, NGOs and others can ensure that their efforts are being targeted in a way that best accomplishes the common and critically important goal of feeding the world while protecting the environment,” said the study’s lead author Paul West, codirector of the Institute on the Environment’s Global Landscapes Initiative.  (VENTURES AFRICA)