Global Agriculture

Food Security of the World: Countries that Can Save the World from Starvation

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By Nimish Gangrade, Editor – Global Agriculture 

01 June 2024, New Delhi: Food security is a critical global issue that demands urgent attention in the face of a growing population and the challenges posed by climate change. Several countries have made noteworthy strides in ensuring food security within their borders and have the potential to serve as models for the rest of the world. We studied the countries that are leading the charge in addressing food security and their potential to mitigate hunger on a global scale. By examining agricultural productivity, technological advancements, policy frameworks, and climate change resilience, we can identify the nations that can safeguard the world from starvation.

China

China stands out as a frontrunner in securing food for its vast population. The country has made substantial investments in research and development, technological adoption, and innovative farming practices. In 2022, agricultural products with a cumulated value of approximately US$98.3 billion were exported from China, an increase of 16.5 percent compared to the previous year.

Precision agriculture techniques, such as remote sensing, drones, and Internet of Things (IoT) devices, have been widely embraced in China to optimize crop production and reduce resource wastage. In addition, large-scale greenhouse farming and vertical farming systems have been implemented to overcome land constraints and boost yields. Furthermore, China’s commitment to sustainable agricultural practices positions it as a potential savior in the global fight against hunger (FAO, 2020). To facilitate the commercial planting of genetically modified crops, China has granted licenses to 26 domestic seed companies to produce, market, and sell genetically modified maize and soybean seeds in specific areas. Its GM Corn acreage in 2024 is expected to cross 6 lakh hectares.

Brazil

Brazil has also made significant progress in sustainable agriculture and land management, offering valuable lessons to the world. The country has successfully implemented agroforestry systems, which combine tree cultivation with crops to enhance soil fertility, promote biodiversity, and mitigate climate change. It is currently the world’s greatest net exporter and in the top 5 producers of 34 commodities. In 2021, Brazil’s agricultural exports were valued at $125 billion, with the main commodities being citrus, sugar, corn, cotton, cattle, chicken, soybeans, and soybean meal.

Brazil’s efforts in reducing deforestation rates through strict environmental regulations and sustainable land-use practices are commendable. These initiatives not only contribute to Brazil’s food security but also play a crucial role in ensuring global food availability (FAO, 2020).

India

India, with its diverse agro-climatic conditions and large population, faces significant challenges in achieving food security. However, the country has implemented innovative strategies and government interventions to address these issues. The Green Revolution, initiated in the 1960s, transformed India’s agriculture through high-yielding crop varieties, improved irrigation systems, and access to credit for farmers.

The National Food Security Act of 2013 further aimed to provide subsidized food grains to two-thirds of the population, ensuring their access to essential food items. India’s success in agricultural transformation and its commitment to addressing hunger through government interventions serve as potential models for other countries facing similar challenges (FAO, 2020). In 2022, India crossed the US$50 billion mark in agriculture-related exports. The top three countries importing agricultural produce from India are the USA ($5216 Mn), China ($3974 Mn) and Bangladesh ($3577 Mn).

Netherlands

The Netherlands, despite its small size, has emerged as a global leader in agricultural productivity and innovation. As worries about its ability to feed its 17 million population grew, the Netherlands began to produce twice as much food with half the resources. The country’s success can be attributed to its efficient agricultural practices, advanced greenhouse technologies, and vertical farming methods.

The Dutch have been at the forefront of inventions aimed at reducing water use and methane and carbon emissions. Examples of these innovations include cell-cultured meat, vertical farming, seed technology, and robotics in milking and harvesting. In 2022, agricultural exports brought in an expected 49.6 billion euros to the Dutch economy. Of this total, 44.9 billion came from exports made domestically, and 4.7 billion came from the reexport of agricultural products made outside.

Precision farming techniques, such as sensor technology and data analytics, optimize resource utilization and reduce environmental impact. This approach maximizes crop yields while minimizing resource consumption. The Netherlands’ expertise in optimizing resource efficiency, minimizing environmental impact, and maximizing crop yields can revolutionize global food production (FAO, 2020).

Countries Resilient to Climate Change

When considering climate change, it is crucial to identify nations that are less prone to its adverse effects and have the potential to contribute to global food security. Countries such as Canada, Russia, Australia, and Argentina possess extensive agricultural land and relatively favorable climatic conditions, which can help ensure stable food production. These nations are less vulnerable to certain climate change impacts, such as droughts and extreme heat, which are becoming increasingly common in other regions (IPCC, 2019).

Addressing global food security requires a multifaceted approach that involves sustainable agricultural practices, technological innovation, policy interventions, and international collaborations. China, Brazil, India, and the Netherlands have demonstrated commendable efforts in ensuring food security within their borders and have the potential to contribute significantly to global food availability. Furthermore, nations like Canada, Russia, Australia, and Argentina, with their favorable climatic conditions, can play a vital role in building the world’s food security. By learning from the experiences and strategies of these countries, and by prioritizing sustainable agricultural practices, we can strive towards a future where no one goes hungry while facing the challenges posed by climate change.

Also Read: Monsoon Update: Monsoon Hits Kerala Two Days Ahead

(For Latest Agriculture News & Updates, follow Krishak Jagat on Google News)

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