How much land is needed for global food production under scenarios of dietary changes and livestock productivity increases in 2030?
Growing global population figures and per-capita incomes imply an increase in food demand and pressure to expand agricultural land. Agricultural expansion into natural ecosystems affects biodiversity and leads to substantial carbon dioxide emissions. Considerable attention has been paid to prospects for increasing food availability, and limiting agricultural expansion, through higher yields on cropland. In contrast, prospects for efficiency improvements in the entire food-chain and dietary changes toward less land-demanding food have not been explored as extensively. In this study, we present model-based scenarios of global agricultural land use in 2030, as a basis for investigating the potential for land-minimized growth of world food supply through: (i) faster growth in feed-to-food efficiency in animal food production; (ii) decreased food wastage; and (iii) dietary changes in favor of vegetable food and less land-demanding meat. The scenarios are based in part on projections of global food agriculture for 2030 by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, FAO. The scenario calculations were carried out by means of a physical model of the global food and agriculture system that calculates the land area and crops/pasture production necessary to provide for a given level of food consumption. In the reference scenario - developed to represent the FAO projections - global agricultural area expands from the current 5.1Â billion ha to 5.4Â billionÂ ha in 2030. In the faster-yet-feasible livestock productivity growth scenario, global agricultural land use decreases to 4.8Â billionÂ ha. In a third scenario, combining the higher productivity growth with a substitution of pork and/or poultry for 20% of ruminant meat, land use drops further, to 4.4Â billionÂ ha. In a fourth scenario, applied mainly to high-income regions, that assumes a minor transition towards vegetarian food (25% decrease in meat consumption) and a somewhat lower food wastage rate, land use in these regions decreases further, by about 15%.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Uwe Schneider & Bruce McCarl, 2003.
"Economic Potential of Biomass Based Fuels for Greenhouse Gas Emission Mitigation,"
Environmental & Resource Economics,
European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 24(4), pages 291-312, April.
- Uwe A. Schneider & Bruce A. McCarl, 2001. "Economic Potential of Biomass-Based Fuels for Greenhouse Gas Emission Mitigation," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 01-wp280, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
- Bouwman, A.F. & Van der Hoek, K.W. & Eickhout, B. & Soenario, I., 2005. "Exploring changes in world ruminant production systems," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 84(2), pages 121-153, May.
- Keyzer, M.A. & Merbis, M.D. & Pavel, I.F.P.W. & van Wesenbeeck, C.F.A., 2005. "Diet shifts towards meat and the effects on cereal use: can we feed the animals in 2030?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 187-202, November.
- Carlsson-Kanyama, Annika & Ekstrom, Marianne Pipping & Shanahan, Helena, 2003. "Food and life cycle energy inputs: consequences of diet and ways to increase efficiency," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2-3), pages 293-307, March.
- Hazell, P.B.R. & Pachauri, J. K., 2006. "Overview: bioenergy and agriculture promises and challenges," 2020 vision briefs 14(1), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- de Boer, Joop & Helms, Martine & Aiking, Harry, 2006. "Protein consumption and sustainability: Diet diversity in EU-15," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(3), pages 267-274, September.
- Hazell, P.B.R., ed. & Pachauri, R. K., ed., 2006. "Bioenergy and agriculture: promises and challenges," 2020 vision focus 14, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Simla Tokgoz & Amani Elobeid & Jacinto F. Fabiosa & Dermot J. Hayes & Bruce A. Babcock & Tun-Hsiang (Edward) Yu & Fengxia Dong & Chad E. Hart & John C. Beghin, 2007.
"Emerging Biofuels: Outlook of Effects on U.S. Grain, Oilseed, and Livestock Markets,"
Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) Publications
07-sr101, Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) at Iowa State University.
- Simla Tokgoz & Amani Elobeid & Jacinto F. Fabiosa & Dermot J. Hayes & Bruce A. Babcock & Tun-Hsiang (Edward) Yu & Fengxia Dong & Chad E. Hart & John C. Beghin, 2007. "Emerging Biofuels: Outlook of Effects on U.S. Grain, Oilseed, and Livestock Markets," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 07-sr101, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
- Pingali, Prabhu L. & Heisey, Paul W., 1999. "Cereal Crop Productivity in Developing Countries: Past Trends and Future Prospects," Economics Working Papers 7682, CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center.
- Engstrom, Rebecka & Carlsson-Kanyama, Annika, 2004. "Food losses in food service institutions Examples from Sweden," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 203-213, June.
- Vincent Gitz & Philippe Ciais, 2004. "Future expansion of agriculture and pasture acts toamplify atmospheric CO2 levels in response to fossilfuel and land-use change emissions," Post-Print halshs-00009828, HAL.
- Bender, William H., 1994. "An end use analysis of global food requirements," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 381-395, August.
- Gerbens-Leenes, P. W. & Nonhebel, S., 2002. "Consumption patterns and their effects on land required for food," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 185-199, August.
- David R. Lee & Christopher B. Barrett & John G. McPeak, 2006. "Policy, technology, and management strategies for achieving sustainable agricultural intensification," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 34(2), pages 123-127, 03.
- von Braun, Joachim, 2007. "The world food situation: New driving forces and required actions," Food policy reports 18, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Wirsenius, Stefan, 2003. "Efficiencies and biomass appropriation of food commodities on global and regional levels," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 77(3), pages 219-255, September.
- van Vuuren, Detlef P. & de Vries, Bert & Eickhout, Bas & Kram, Tom, 2004. "Responses to technology and taxes in a simulated world," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 579-601, July.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:agisys:v:103:y:2010:i:9:p:621-638. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.