Food security and sustainable development of agriculture

| Foreign Markets |

Seeing that the global population is rising at a remarkable pact, in order to feed all those people in a smart and sustainable manner, it is crucial to take action and keep the changing needs of the populations in mind. The goal is sustainable development, which involves the adequate use of resources available and the conservation of the natural environment.

Self-sufficiency may help solve the problems with food production

Some countries have chosen to strive for full self-sufficiency. Is it a good solution, especially now that the global population is growing so quickly? Yes, it is. Sustainable agricultural production evolves into self-sufficiency, meaning food production solely for the nation’s own needs and buying fresh produce from the local suppliers. On the one hand, this gives rise to fears about global food security and the threat of rising prices. On the other hand, buying local provides an opportunity for the regional producers and gives the inhabitants the chance to buy products of good quality as well as from trustworthy sources.

Developing local agriculture on a large scale

The cost of agricultural production depends on the local climate and weather conditions, such as temperature, rainfall, sunlight and soil quality. Let us examine an example: California, a state where winter is mild, summer is hot and soil is fertile, chose to channel its agricultural production into the cultivation of almonds, strawberries and grapes. Local production suffices to satisfy the demand of the American market.

Promoting local producers and the trade of their goods on a small area is cheaper and more favorable for the consumers. It makes it possible to avoid a situation in which the cost of shipping of agricultural goods exceeds their value. Moreover, transporting cargo across thousands of kilometers makes it more likely that the food is of poor quality.

The pivotal role of the consumers

Apart from the national governments, whose duty is to support sustainable food production – and this includes local initiatives and co-ops – the consumers themselves need to act as well. First and foremost, they should reconsider and improve their eating habits. The goal is to choose to buy food of good quality as well as provide the body with the indispensable nutrients. “More” needs not mean “better” here, as processed food frequently lacks nutritional value. Reducing the consumption of such food might bring considerable savings in greenhouse gases emissions.

Agricultural manufacturers could also benefit from lifting the barriers in the international trade. Making trade more liberal would help the market participants use the natural resources better, so as to improve the efficiency of agricultural production.