March 2, 2011

Enough Food to Feed 9 Billion People in 2050?

John Parker, The Economist


AP Photo

THE 1.6-hectare (4-acre) Broadbalk field lies in the centre of Rothamsted farm, about 40km (25 miles) north of London. In 1847 the farm’s founder, Sir John Lawes, described its soil as a heavy loam resting on chalk and capable of producing good wheat when well manured. The 2010 harvest did not seem to vindicate his judgment. In the centre of the field the wheat is abundant, yielding 10 tonnes a hectare, one of the highest rates in the world for a commercial crop. But at the western end, near the manor house, it produces only 4 or 5 tonnes a hectare; other, spindlier, plants yield just 1 or 2 tonnes.

Read Full Article ››

TAGGED: Population Growth, Food Supply, Food

RECOMMENDED ARTICLES

October 10, 2013
Will a Chicken Fed Lemons Taste Like Them?
Dan Nosowitz, PopSci
A recent New York Times story looked into the high-end chicken market. These are chickens in stark contrast to factory chickens, fed with produce that's out of the price range of most humans. more ››
October 4, 2013
Earth in 2100: Four Possible Scenarios
Catherine Brahic, NewScientist
YOU may have heard last week that Earth in 2100 is likely to be between 0.3 and 4.8 °C warmer than it was in the late 20th century. This is one of the key messages of the latest UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change... more ››