Population pressure and the food supply system in the developing world
Population and Development Review 22(3): 483-503
Publication date: 1996
Trends in agricultural production in the developing world between 1962 and 1989 are analyzed to obtain estimates of the contributions to the past expansion of the food supply made by increases in land use, cropping frequency, crop yields, and imports. Countries with high and low population densities responded quite differently to rising demand for food. During the next half-century, rapid population growth and continued improvements in the quantity and quality of diets will result in a large (perhaps threefold) rise in the demand for food. While no persistent global shortages of food are foreseen, several problems-including degradation of environmental resources, food production in the densest and poorest countries, and undernutrition-require concerted attention.