Growing Food for a Growing Population
By the year 2050, our world’s population will need 70% more food. How will we be able to meet this growing demand? In a word: sustainability.
Agriculture plays an important role in meeting the need for a sustainable food supply, but it won’t happen overnight. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Growing food has an environmental impact. Resources are used to grow the diverse amount of food choices we all enjoy today. Farmers know better than anyone the preservation of land, water and clean air habitats are vitally important.
- Sustainable agriculture is a continuous process. Everyone in the food system from farmers to community members to business owners has a role, and the key to moving forward is the willingness of everyone to take the next step toward sustainable food production.
- Sustainability is a priority for all farms – organic and conventional. Farms of all shapes and sizes use a variety of sustainability practices that keep soil, water and air clean and healthy. Both conventional and organic farming use pesticides to protect crops from bugs and weeds along with crop scouting and drones to monitor fields and apply chemicals only where needed.
- We’re already measuring and improving farm sustainability. Farmers use environmental footprint calculators to monitor and assess their overall sustainability, new research is showing us ways to reduce energy use and GHG emissions, and the EPA monitors environmental impact with regulations such as the Clean Water and Air Acts
- Continuous improvement is happening every day. Farmers use data and technology to become more efficient, nimble and more equipped to further protect the planet’s resources.Farmers also employ conservation methods such as recycling water on dairy farms after cleaning equipment, growing cover crops that keep water and soil in fields and precision irrigation methods.
Farmers are committed to sustainability and overall food safety, which is great for all of us.