File Name: world population and food supply .zip
Does population growth affect food production? Does this effect vary across regions? Scholars have proposed food insecurity as one of the threats that society will endure during this century. Global population has grown exponentially. Current numbers are estimated around 6,,, World Bank, and are expected to rise 9. However, world cereal yields and agriculture production have declined since Harris and Kennedy, According to FAO, per capita food production declined in 51 developing countries, while rising in only 43 between and Sadik, This study examines the relationship between agriculture growth and population growth rates in countries around the world.
In particular, this paper seeks to identify the difference in the relationship between population growth and agricultural growth among the following regions: Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America and Oceania.
The paper begins by reviewing the current literature relevant to the Malthusian theory of scarcity and agriculture production. It continues by developing a theoretical framework in which I suggest that population growth is increasing at a higher rate than agriculture production. I test this hypothesis by analyzing agriculture production, population growth and economic development data from all countries from to The paper concludes with a discussion of the results of the regression on agriculture production and a summary of future research needs.
Decreased food production in less developed countries, increases in the price of food, and growing production of bio-fuels are responsible for current rates of food scarcity. Global warming, crop diversity loss and urban sprawl also affect agriculture production. Kendall and Pimentel note that current per capita grain production seems to be decreasing worldwide.
Kendall and Pimentel, Kendall and Pimentel designed three models to predict crop levels by They concluded that if production continues at its current rate, per capita crop production will decline by While Neo-Malthusian scholars such as Paul Elhrich believe that the only way to avoid this catastrophe is by restraining population growth, others such as Rusell Hopfenberg assert that we must curb food production to limit population growth.
Despite his predictions, Erhlich recognized that the some societal shifts have occurred that indicated that at least some populations were slowing their growth. For instance, fertility rates in most developed nations have dropped to less than replacement levels and the Green Revolution had a larger impact than expected Ehrlich, However, the absolute number of people without enough to eat in — approximately million — was similar to the number reported in Elhrich, Scholars as Rusell Hopfenberg have supported this hypothesis.
He estimated future population numbers by using past food productions numbers, which were similar to those estimated by FAO. According to Hopfenberg, Malthus and Darwin understood that in the absence of limitations of resources — such space and food — populations will grow exponentially.
If resources are limited, the growth rate will begin to decline as the population reaches the maximum that the environment can support. Population will continue to decline until equilibrium is reached. Currently, African nations such as Liberia 4. Nevertheless, grain production has declined 12 percent in the last two decades Dyson, The total amount of land used to grow crops in Latin America has increased by 11 percent since , which represents the largest increase of croplands in the world Gonzalez Land availability is a determinant factor for agriculture production.
Although the area of arable land is expected to increase by million hectares by , the agricultural productivity of this land will be below current levels Kendall and Pimentel, Boongarts proposes that less developed nations could meet demand if new economic and technological policies enacted to support sustainable agriculture, but not under the current agriculture production model.
Agriculture has three main variables that need to be studied: production, population and distribution Baker, Since population and production are long term problems, distribution problems should be addressed immediately. Trade has become a controversial response to solve distribution problems. Scholars argue that trade allows regions with agricultural surpluses to transfer their excess food to regions with agriculture deficits, thus bringing an equilibrium to global production.
Springer and Pingali, Kellogs et al. Developed countries have high levels of food exports, while less developed countries import most of their food supply. Their results showed that greater democracy is associated with lower agricultural efficiency, which implies that an interest group is taking control over agricultural process Lio and Liu, The consensus among scholars suggests that economic growth directly affects agriculture production.
Jenkins and Scalan argue that an increase in economic growth—measured as increases in GDP—has a positive relationship with the daily intake of calories of children in developing countries.
This suggests that development structures and economic policies affect food supply more than increases in agricultural production. McDonald argues that regions with higher population will present a negative relationship with agriculture production. Developing regions will present higher population growth rates and lower agriculture production growth rates and developed nations will present an inverse relationship Pimentel, Recent trends show that since , agricultural output has declined in Oceania, Europe and North America Magdoff and Tokar, On the other hand, Asian regions experienced an increase in their agriculture production, particularly because of increases in use of fertilizers and genetically modified crops.
Based upon this background, population growth will be a significant determinant of agricultural production. To explain this relationship I use a cross-sectional time-series data from to Consistent with literature I incorporate the control variables of GDP per capita as a measure of economic growth Jenkins and Scalan, , agricultural land Kendall and Pimentel, , agricultural imports Kellogs et al. The study looks at countries during the past twenty-six years using an ordinary least square regression OLS , meeting the required assumptions.
First, the independent variables and control variables are non-random selected. Secondly, I assume that the independent variables and control variables are linearly independent. To avoid multi-collinearity among of control variables, the continental region of Oceania was dropped. Third, I assume normality and no correlation for all variables.
The baseline model examines the relationship between agriculture production growth and population growth, taking in consideration GDP per capita, agriculture material imports, agricultural land and the political stability as control variables. It also incorporates dummy variables for regional classification. The second model uses all the variables, excluding regional classifications.
The third model drops the Polity score variable from the regression. Finally, the fourth model analyzes population growth and regional classification. It refers to the net output by means of cultivation of crops and livestock production. This number was obtained from the World Development Indicators and measures the annual change of agriculture production vs.
It is based on the de facto definition of population, which includes all the residents regardless of legal status or citizenship. GDP per capita changes measures the economic development —an approximation of the value of goods produced per person-in all the countries included in the model.
Agricultural land —measured in sq. This number was computed using the World Development Indicators dataset. I also introduced dummy variables to determine the regional classification -Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America and Oceania- for each country.
Table 1 includes the summary of the regression for the all models. Model 1 shows the coefficient estimates on agriculture production growth in all regions, including all the control variables: GDP per capita, Agriculture Raw Materials, Agricultural Land and Polity. The adjusted R 2 for most models is 0. As well, all of the models show significant coefficients for Agricultural Land AgriLand. The results of Model 1 do not support the hypothesis that population growth negatively affects agriculture production growth or that regional classification plays a role.
The coefficient for population growth is positive, which indicates that an increase of one unit in population growth will increase agriculture production growth by 0. Model 1 also shows that agriculture land has a significant impact on agriculture production. The results indicate that holding all control variables constant, agricultural land will increase agricultural production by Model 2 does not include coefficient estimates for any of the continental regions.
The model does not support the hypothesis that population growth will have a negative effect on agriculture production growth. The results indicate that population growth will increase agriculture production growth by Model 2 also shows that an increase in agricultural land will increase agriculture production growth by Furthermore, the results indicate that an increase in democratization will decrease agriculture production growth by 5.
Interestingly, Lio and Liu found the same result in their coefficient estimates for agriculture production and democratization. Model 3 does not include coefficient estimates for Polity. Results were similar to those obtained in Model 1. Significant coefficients were attained for Population Growth and Agricultural Land. The results do not support the hypothesis that population growth decreases agricultural production or that the effect differs among regions.
The model indicates that population growth will increase agriculture production growth by Finally, Model 4 includes coefficient estimates for population growth and regional classification. Surprisingly, the results indicate no significant coefficient for population growth, which does not support the main hypothesis. It is not possible to determine whether the model supports the hypothesis that agriculture production varies among regions.
However, the difference between the coefficients is not as significant as expected. Neo-Malthusian scholars argue that population growth is a primary determinant Malthus, , while more recent scholars argue that political and economic policies play a more important role in determining production Jenkins and Scalan, ; Lio and Liu, This paper sought to determine whether population growth affects agriculture production growth. I used OLS regression to evaluate this hypothesis.
The results of the models did not support the hypothesis. Indeed, the results indicated a positive relationship between agriculture production and population growth, contrary to the expected by the neo-Malthusian model. The comparison of population growth and agricultural production changes across regions also did not yield the expected results.
However, if population growth rates continue, increasing urbanization will potentially threaten for agricultural production. Further research needs to focus on studying the relationship between population density, land conversion rates and agriculture production.
Although food prices in major world markets are at or near a historical low, there is increasing concern about food security—the ability of the world to provide healthy and environmentally sustainable diets for all its peoples. This article is an introduction to a collection of reviews whose authors were asked to explore the major drivers affecting the food system between now and A third set explores exogenous factors affecting the food system climate change, competition for water, energy and land, and how agriculture depends on and provides ecosystem services , while the final set explores cross-cutting themes food system economics, food wastage and links with health. Two of the clearest conclusions that emerge from the collected papers are that major advances in sustainable food production and availability can be achieved with the concerted application of current technologies given sufficient political will , and the importance of investing in research sooner rather than later to enable the food system to cope with both known and unknown challenges in the coming decades. The supply and availability of food has been a crucial factor shaping the emergence, development and persistence of human civilizations throughout the ages. For the last few decades food has been cheaper in real terms, and more readily available, than probably at any time in history, which partly explains why food policy has received less prominence in national and international decision-making than in earlier times.
Oxford, Ohio. This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables. Since World War II, the solution to problems of world food supply and population has concerned many people. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations FAO has done much to publicize the fact that a large percentage of the world's people are undernourished.
Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables. Abstract. Since World War II, the solution to problems of world food supply and.
Food security  is a measure of the availability of food and individuals' ability to access it. There is evidence of food security being a concern many thousands of years ago, with central authorities in ancient China and ancient Egypt being known to release food from storage in times of famine. At the World Food Conference the term "food security" was defined with an emphasis on supply; food security is defined as the "availability at all times of adequate, nourishing, diverse, balanced and moderate world food supplies of basic foodstuffs to sustain a steady expansion of food consumption and to offset fluctuations in production and prices". The final report of the World Food Summit states that food security "exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.
Human population growth has typically been seen as the primary causative factor of other ecologically destructive phenomena. Current human disease epidemics are explored as a function of population size. Here, human population growth is discussed as being subject to the same dynamic processes as the population growth of other species.
According to the UN, the current world population of 7. The population increase is remarkable in developing countries, especially in Africa and Asia. The population of India is expected to top the list in , surpassing that of China. Along with the population growth, the demand for cereals is also expected to increase. In comparison with s, the world cereal production in doubled and reached 2.
Does population growth affect food production?
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