Feeding the World in 21st Century

Bangkok Post by Dr Yusof Basiron

One of the biggest challenges the world faces over the next half century is howto feed a global population that is rapidly increasing. Some estimates have world population topping out at nine billion by mid-century, a near 50% increase.

World demand for calorie-rich, nutritious fare is starting tojump. Feeding somanyhungry mouths is a complex task. But it will never happen unless wesubstantially increase food yields, especially the yields of staple foods such as palm oil which is already used by over one billion consumers around the world.

The good news is that our industry has the potential to meet the rising demand. We have invested in productivity-enhancing technology to boost yields. And we have done this while protecting the global environment. Palm oil is the world’s most sustainable vegetable oil as it produces significantly more calories per acre than competing products. Thus our industry contributes safe food products to enhance global food security; protects valuable natural resources such as forests; and provides good jobsand careers for an aspirational middle class.

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