Speaking at the event in Atlanta, US, Bryan Weech, livestock director with the World Wildlife Fund, outlined the challenges facing the meat production sector and said solutions had to be tackled globally. He said that to meet the food needs of the growing world population would mean the world needs to produce as much food in the next 40 years as it has in the last 8,000.
“Agriculture and food production is the biggest user of the planets resources,” he told the Sustainability Summit at the expo. “Climate change is happening and we’re that in drought and that’s a huge problem globally. Seventy per cent of water resources is used by agriculture.”
He said the sector would need to embrace technology to tackle some of the challenges.
He added that land availability was also a major issue: “Around 33% of land in the world is used to produce food. If things carry on, we’ll need 24% more land to provide food to meet the needs of the growing population.
“We need to find solutions to these challenges. We need to freeze the footprint of food so these challenges can be addressed and dealt with. These are global issues, global challenges and they need global solutions.”
He highlighted some early works to tackle issues on an international level, including the Consumer Goods Forum, which includes 57 companies and has pledged to take deforestation out of their supply chains by 2020. He added: “Solutions will come from working together.”