A new vision for agriculture
momagri, movement for a world agricultural organization, is a think tank chaired by Christian Pèes.
It brings together, managers from the agricultural world and important people from external perspectives,
such as health, development, strategy and defense. Its objective is to promote regulation
of agricultural markets by creating new evaluation tools, such as economic models and indicators,
and by drawing up proposals for an agricultural and international food policy.
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Africa, Asia and the Middle East will remain loss-making areas



Frédéric Hénin, Editor in Chief, Terre-net


Article published in Terre-net Média



A 50 percent increase in yields by 2050 might not be enough to ensure food security in Africa, in the Middle East or in Asia. The food gap would reach 4,000 Kcal/day/hectare1 in 2050 in Africa, and 2,000 Kcal/day/hectare in Asia.

The world’s farmers are on the front line to feed 9.2 billion people by 2050. They must increase global agricultural production by 70 percent to address the demographic challenge and meet the needs of a middle class with the means to buy meat-containing foods. Together with their families, the middle classes account for over a third of the global population.

Reducing waste and altering food diets would help to overcome such challenges. Rising food prices could speed up this development and lead developed nations to cut down by 3,000 calories per day and per person the amount of consumed foods. Such price general rise could also motivate people to adopt food diets with less meat.

The amount of agricultural products thus available would help current the currently loss-making areas of Asia, Africa and the Middle East in strengthening their food security by importing the crops they will not be able to produce. Because in spite of the 50 percent yield increases expected thanks to high performance techniques and, to a lesser extent, thanks to increased farmland––which would only contribute to a 20 percent increase in agricultural production––these areas would not be able to meet their needs. Expressed in kilocalories per day and per hectare (Kcal/day/hectare)2, the gaps would reach 4,000 Kcal in Africa in 2050, and 2,000 Kcal in Asia. In other words, even if average yields were to reach 17,000 Kcal/day/hectare from 12,000 in Sub-Saharan Africa between 2010 and 2050, there would be a gap of 4,000Kcal so that farming might feed all Africans.


MOTIVATING FARMERS TO PRODUCE AND INVEST

Producing more in throughout the world also dictates a new organization to market agricultural products in order to protect small-scale farmers as well as a reserve policy to ease price volatility, which undermines markets and discourages farmers from production. In other words, we will need both high enough agricultural prices to persuade farmers in these three world regions to produce and invest, but without excessive levels in order to protect the purchasing power of the urban populations.

Against this background, Europe and America––areas that are showing a surplus of agricultural products––will be essential to ensure the food security of structurally loss-making countries without flooding their markets with low-cost products. They will help drive trade. At present, they only account for five percent of agricultural production.


1 The production deficit of cultivated farmland in quintals per hectare in order to feed the total population is expressed in kilocalories (Kcal). For instance, in order to cover a food gap of 3,000Kcal per person and per day, yields must increase so that each hectare of land feed an additional person per day and per hectare (1 hectare = 2.47 acres).
2 Ibidem


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Paris, 19 December 2018