Jonathan Foley at Chautauqua on the Global Food Shortage

Jonathan Foley just wrapped up his time on the Chautauqua Amphitheater stage discussing the future of food. To preview his talk, here's a snippit of his editorial today in the Chautauquan Daily:

You’ve probably heard it many times. While the exact phrasing varies, it usually goes something like this: The world’s population will grow to 9 billion by mid-century, putting substantial demands on the planet’s food supply. To meet these growing demands, we will need to grow almost twice as much food by 2050 as we do today. And that means we’ll need to use genetically modified crops and other advanced technologies to produce this additional food. It’s a race to feed the world, and we had better get started.

To be fair, there are grains of truth in each of these statements, but they are far from complete. And they give a distorted vision of the global food system, potentially leading to poor policy and investment choices.

To make better decisions, we need to examine where the narrative goes off the rails.

The whole piece, and his subsequent talk, is supremely eye-opening. It's a sober review of the data, and a surprisingly bearish view of GMO when presented through his lens. Worth checking out. And for those who weren't able to make it to the lecture, here's his talk, "The Other Inconvenient Truth: How Agriculture is Changing the Face of Our Planet," from TEDxTC.