UK – Global food security problems will not be solved solely by producing more food, writes Chris Harris from the Oxford Farming Conference (OFC).
While food production will have to be increased, more attention will need to be paid to preserving land resources and reducing waste.
Speaking during the Oxford Farming Conference, Irish Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney said that in producing more food the resources used to produce that food will have to be preserved so that more food can be produced in the future.
“We are not going to solve the global food security problems simply by producing more food,” he said.
He added: “We need to do much more on food waste in the developed world.
“We need to manage diet and there is an education process for this.”
European agriculture commissioner Dacian Ciolos said that food production has to be viewed and increased not only an EU at level but also a global level.
“But we have to look at the impact of increased production,” he said.
He said that part of the impact had been the loss of many hectares of land for food production and loss of biodiversity.
“We need more research and innovation in order to increase production,” he said.
He added that the EU and US cannot solve the problem of food security alone. He said it is a global problem.
“The EU has a role to play at international level,” Mr Ciolos said.
He said that together with the management and increase in food production, the control of climate change and answering problems of poverty are all interrelated.
He also called for a reduction in food waste on the side of the consumer in the EU and the developed world and in food storage and transport in the developing regions such as Africa.
British National Farmers’ Union President Peter Kendall added: “We need to reduce food waste at both the farm level and consumer level.”