The world population is projected to reach around 10 billion by the year 2050. Experts warn that this ever-increasing population will put pressure on food supplies. As a result, there is a need to look at ways to feed the growing population properly and sustainably.
According to reports, over 800 million people lack food security. Besides that, the reports also suggest that climate changes might make it even more challenging for the world to feed everyone.
Food Challenges Are Acknowledged Widely
Experts in the food industry argue that food production is not growing as fast as the population grows. Fortunately, many organizations are doing a lot of great things to try to deal with the challenges.
For example, new crops are being developed like genetically modified organisms (GMO) that provide better yields and are resistant to diseases. However, these crops are still controversial. On the other hand, there is also meat being grown artificially. This development, if fully adopted, will help to deal with potential land and water issues. It will also help reduce carbon production associated with animal farming.
There Is a Need for a Dietary Shake-Up
Food security scholars suggest that humans need to perform a dietary shake-up. The scholars argue that the world produces a large number of calories from a small number of crops in restricted locations.
As a result, the experts argue that this approach leads to cheap food production, promotes wastage, and destroys soil fertility and biodiversity.
There is consensus that the world needs structural changes that would lead to better nutrition and fewer calories. Moreover, the changes should also help humans diversify the foods they eat.
So what foods will help sustain the growing world population?
Insects might not be the most popular food choice for many people in the world. However, their popularity is gradually growing as around 2 billion people in the world eat insects. If you are from Africa, Latin America, or Asia, you probably know someone who enjoys insects as a delicacy.
A report by the Food and Agriculture Organization revealed that humans consume around 1900 insect types. The popular insects humans consume include cicadas, wasps, grasshoppers, and beetles.
These insects are rich in proteins and minerals. They can also be processed and used in burgers and sausages, and other foods. Moreover, insects also have environmental benefits.
For example, you can use insects to feed on some organic waste. Therefore, replacing dairy and eggs with insects would help to reduce carbon emissions. At the moment, the challenge is to get better ways of rearing insects on a large scale because most insects consumed today are caught from the wild.
Quinoa is an important plant in its countries of origin, such as Bolivia and Peru. Moreover, because it is a halophyte adapted to salty conditions, it can find a home in the UAE.
The plant is rich in nutrients, including massive amounts of minerals and all the eight essential amino acids. Additionally, quinoa can be used for various uses. For instance, it can be used as animal feed, a vegetable, breakfast cereal, and a source of flour.
As the world is tackling the obesity crisis, quinoa is a great option. The plant has also received the endorsement of the FAO as a potential crop to drive humans to the future.
Seaweed has been popular around the world for centuries, especially in Asia. Nutritionists reveal that the seaweed contains up to 30 minerals and massive amounts of protein and essential fatty acids. They are also known to have other health benefits, such as boosting immunity.
Moreover, you don’t need pesticides and fertilizers to grow seaweed. It also grows fast, and it does not compete with traditional farming. There are more than 100 types of edible seaweed, and its global production has also gone up to around 28 million tonnes.
Kale is a food that was very popular globally and would become a critical foodstuff again. This is mainly because experts are suggesting that the human diet will be plant-based.
Kales were very popular in Europe, and their popularity has been resurgent in recent years. It is regarded as a superfood, and its rich nutritional value makes it an essential food in the future.
For instance, nutritionists argue that kale has more calcium and iron than beef and milk. As the world plans for the end of animal agriculture, having plenty of kale will help cover up in terms of nutrition.
People living in developing countries will tell you they harvest food from forests a lot. In fact, FAO has argued that forests offer bush meat and vegetables, especially in times when the harvest is poor.
Food experts are encouraging greater use of forests for sustainability. Several studies have confirmed that food from trees is usually rich in proteins and minerals.
Food sustainability reports have revealed the rise of lab-grown meat. It started with a lab-grown beef burger, and the idea of clean meat is slowly becoming mainstream.
The experts argue that clean meat has more benefits than meat from animals. Its benefits have even seen some vegetarians claim they would be willing to eat it. Emerging trends in food tech show that lab-grown meat has the potential to be a mainstay in the diet of 2050.