It has been reported that the world population is going to rise by more than half, in the next 30 years or so. With that increase, the food demand would rise, leading to a decrease in its supply. Hence, alternative technologies of food production are our way out.
If we haven’t yet discovered means to produce food on a far lesser space, we would need to change the entire country of India into an agricultural land. And more. A recent study from the World Research Institute dictates that this would lead to a massive increase in the emission of carbon dioxide and other such greenhouse gases, by 15 billion tons. This grossly overshadows the amount prescribed by the Institute that deems 4 billion tons to be the limit.
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Both the UN and the World Bank have brought out reports which say that the demand for food is going to increase by 50% by 2050, and demands for animal produce would increase by 70%. This means that we have to convert at least 600 million km of forest land into agricultural lands if we are to bring about the rate of production even faster than we have done in human history.
But there are ways to combat this. Researchers have drawn 22 objectives, and 10 such technologies that may help with this. Goes without saying that we have to do our part by not wasting food, planting more trees, preventing greenhouse emissions, and the like.
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The alternative technologies of food production are here as follows-
1. Using CRISPR to help in increasing yields, by unlocking traits.
2. Going vegan.
3. Using Apeel Sciences non-toxic spray-on films. These increase the shelf life.
4. Producing and consuming rice that agrees with lower levels of methane generation.
5. Preventing fertilizers from turning microbes in the soil into Nitrous oxide, through compounds.
6. Using DSM products (supplements) which can be used to feed livestock.
7. Developing nitrogen absorbing crops.
8. Moving from wild fish to algae-based fish feeds for farmed fish, which would prevent loss of wild fish.
9. Hydrogen produced in fertilizers with nitrogen, utilizing solar power.
10. Palm oil trees to be relied upon for their high-yield produce.
While this goes against the notion of sustainable agriculture, that dictates the presence of small farms and low yields, the need of the hour, from the perspective of the climate is to produce as much food as possible in the land we have. And history has borne witness to the success of alternative farming technologies of food production whenever there was a need for such a program.
Hopefully, we would be able to bring the alternative technologies of food production into use and help planet Earth.
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