Food and Agriculture : the future of sustainability /

by Giovannucci, D. Published by : United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, (New York :) Physical details: xii, 94 p. : ill. ; Year: 2012 Item type: E-Book
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Includes bibliographical references, index, and notes.

Executive Summary iii
Acknowledgements vii
1. Introduction 1
Brief background 2
Methodology 3
2. State of agriculture and food: An overview 5
2.1 Introduction: The food challenge 6
Challenges to food security 8
Waste 9
The challenges of emerging dietary habits for human health and ecosystem health 10
Pressures on food prices 12
2.2 Shifting organization of the agriculture sector 14
Shifting roles and governance from public to private 15
Role of firms in governance 16
Integration and global markets 17
Increased role of technology and innovation 18
Increased concentration and dependence in food supply 20
2.3 External challenges 22
Increase in population 22
Agricultural land degradation and water scarcity 22
Climate change 24
Energy market impacts on agriculture 25
Rethinking agriculture’s role in the ecosystem: a necessary multifunctionality 26
2.4 Conclusion 27
3. Main challenges and priorities of global thought leaders 29
Themes addressed 30
3.1 Policy Group 30
Introduction: Successes and challenges 30
The Importance of technology and innovation 31
Shifts in research and development to facilitate innovation 31
Shifts in policy to incentivize prudent use of limited resources 32
Trade and markets 33
Focus on smallholders is crucial 34
Waste and consumption 34
3.2 Rural Livelihoods and Poverty Group 35
Climate change 35
Water 35
Soil quality 36
xii Food and Agriculture: The future of sustainability
Rural Livelihoods and the role of small holders: Encouraging agroecological farming practices 37
Encouraging cooperation and farmer organization and improving extension 37
Research and extension with small-holders 38
Health and food safety and new technologies 38
Women in agriculture: 39
Bio-fuels 39
Land grabs 39
The missing links and what is needed to move forward 40
3.3 Agricultural Production and Environmental Sustainability Group 41
Introduction: Many shades of green 41
Salient trends and looming challenges 41
Biophysical aspects of farm, ecosystem, and landscape management 43
Institutional innovation: Organization, governance, policy, and markets 45
Recommendations 47
3.4 Business Specialists Group 49
Overview of perspectives 49
Population trends and nutrition security 50
Sustainability and rural livelihoods 50
Sustainability and technology practices 51
Sustainability and natural resource inputs (water, soil) 51
Sustainability and landscape change (biodiversity, conservation,
ecosystem services and climatic adaptation) 52
Sustainability and markets (post-harvest processes, quality and safety,
bio-based products, and supply chain standards) 53
Future Choices: Recommendations and next steps 54
4. Our choices: Agriculture and food in a changing world 57
4.1 The next 20 years: Ranking priorities 58
4.2 What a new era for agriculture looks like: Consensus areas 59
4.3 Seven remaining areas of disagreement 65
4.4 Conclusion 68

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