The world’s farmers need a pay raise, or else, come mid-century, the other 7 billion of us may not have enough to eat.
As the Earth Policy Institute notes, the world produced more grain than it consumed throughout the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s. Today, those surpluses are gone. While the world harvested 20.4 million tons of grain between 2001 and 2010, it consumed 20.5 million tons. In October 2009 the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reported that world food production would have to increase 70 percent by 2050 to adequately feed the planet’s growing population. In developing nations alone, this would require an investment of $83 billion a year. And, the organization noted, “farmers and prospective farmers will invest in agriculture only if their investments are profitable.”