Evolving notions of food security
– Tim Benton, June 2016
Following the 2007/8 food price spike, the predominant notion has been we need to grow 60 – 100% more to “feed the world”. Despite the hopes of “sustainable intensification” it is clear that the direction o f travel of the food system is unsustainable, creating significant damage to the health of people and the environment (biodiversity, water and other services, and perhaps especially climate). New conversations are occurring about how to make the food system more sustainable, and along with these comes recognition that changing diets, and reducing demand, may play a very significant role. Eating healthily, eating sustainably and reducing waste may create considerable savings: the world already produces sufficient calories to feed 11bn people, so the discussion is not so much about growing more, but about growing what and how.
Lecture slides: Food Security slides