WRI Report Says GMOs and Gene Editing Can Help Improve Crop Breeding to Boost Yields to Feed the World
A new report, Creating a Sustainable Food Future, published by the World
Resources Institute (WRI) suggests ways of feeding the planet's almost 10
billion people by 2050 when food demand is set to rise by over 50%, and
demand for animal-based food products (meat, dairy, and eggs) likely to grow
by almost 70%.
The report states that the world must boost food production on existing
agricultural land and that genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and gene
editing can help improve crop breeding to boost yields. According to the
report, there is no evidence that GMOs have directly harmed human health.
The report says that there is no silver bullet in producing enough food
sustainably, but it offers a five-course menu of solutions to ensure feeding
everyone without increasing emissions, fueling deforestation, or
exacerbating poverty. WRI estimates that feeding the world sustainably while
reducing agricultural land use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050
will mean the whole world:
1. - reducing demand by cutting food loss and waste, eating less beef and
lamb, using crops for food and feed rather than biofuels, and reducing
population growth by achieving replacement fertility levels;
2. - increasing crop and livestock productivity to higher than historical
levels, but on the same land area;
3. - stopping deforestation, restoring peatlands and degraded land, and
linking yield gains to the protection of natural landscapes;
4. - improving aquaculture and managing wild fisheries more effectively;
5. - using innovative technologies and farming methods that lower
agricultural GHG emissions.
Creating a Sustainable Food Future has been produced by WRI in partnership
with the World Bank, UN Environment, UN Development Programme, and the
French agricultural research agencies CIRAD and INRA.