Dire Food Future?

Posted on February 18th, 2009 by

Ever since Malthus warned us we were running up against the limit of being able to feed the world, we have dodged the conflict between food production and a growing population by innovation and increased use of fossil fuel inputs.  Now rising food prices, stagnating cereal production, and declining fish catches have the UN suggesting that food production will decline 25% in the next 40 years.  Predicting the future is a dicey proposition, but last year’s run-up in food prices and the current economic crisis suggest that food insecurity will be a prominent world issue.

How should Gustavus students prepare themselves for these challenges?



  1. Lisa Heldke says:

    For an academic’s look at the history of such dire predictions, see the wittily titled MEALS TO COME: THE HISTORY OF THE FUTURE OF FOOD, by Warren Belasco.

  2. Joe Lencioni says:

    It seems that learning how to do things like gardening and composting, particularly in an urban environment (I’m thinking worm bins… and maybe things like aquaponics), is probably the best thing Gustavus students could do to prepare themselves for these challenges.