The Noah Project

Rebuilding a sustainable world.

Food Imports on the Rise

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Marianela Fader from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Germany, and colleagues, calculated the growing capacity of every country in the world, and compared it with food requirements, both now and projected forward to 2050.  Using current data on population, and food and water consumption in each nation, they were able to assess what proportion of its food a country could produce.

“Today, 66 countries are not able to be self-sufficient due to water and/or land constraints,” said Fader. This equates to 16% of the world’s population depending on food imported from other countries.

A number of developed countries, including the UK, the Netherlands and Japan, are already unable to meet the food requirements of their populations.

Food security is going to be a big issue over the coming decades. The study indicates that improving agricultural productivity can play a key role in maintaining food security. Meanwhile, a change in diet, such as towards more seasonal and vegetarian food, could also have a significant impact.

Author: Daniela

I will forever be grateful that I was introduced to the utility and beauty of hand crafted products early in life - from the symbolic motifs sewn into the coarse linen fabric of Croatian traditional wear to the colorful Kilim carpets that decorated the parquet floors in my grandmother's living room. I treasure the memories of my grandfather teaching me how to protect myself against the "evil eye," the smell of the flower stalls in the open air market where my grandmother bought produce early every morning for the day’s meals and the summers spent at my great grandmother's where the village wags would come to gossip over thick, black Turkish coffee in her cool stone kitchen. Someone noted that "For all of us that want to move forward, there are a very few that want to keep the old methods of production, traditions and crafts alive." I am a fellow traveler with those who value the old traditions and folk wisdom. I believe the knowledge they possess can contribute significantly to our efforts to build a more sustainable world - one that values the individual over the corporation, conservation over growth and happiness over wealth.

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