- Modernizing agricultural systems and reducing the productivity gaps that currently exist is the best avenue for increasing food supplies and reducing poverty.
With the world population already exceeding 7 billion, can the fight against hunger be won in the future?
Yes, according to Prabhu Pingali, the deputy director of the Agriculture Development Division of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, who will give a free public talk at the University of California, Riverside on Thursday, April 5, 2012.
Titled, “Malthus Is Still Wrong: We Can Feed a World of 9 Billion People,” Pingali’s talk, presented by the One Health Center, will take place at 2:30 p.m. in Room 1113, the CHASS Interdisciplinary Building on campus.
“Unabated population growth, rising incomes, diversion of food towards fuel production and the negative consequences of climate change are said to cause ‘a perfect storm’ with severe consequences for the availability and access to food at the global and local levels,” Pingali said. “But we’ve been here before. There are significant opportunities for meeting current and future food demand by enhancing productivity in developing country agriculture. Modernizing agricultural systems and reducing the productivity gaps that currently exist is the best avenue for increasing food supplies and reducing poverty.”
Pingali has three decades of experience analyzing food, agriculture and developing policy in Asia, Africa and Latin America. He has authored ten books and more than 100 referred journal articles and book chapters on food policy, technological change, productivity growth and resource management in the developing world.
He has received several international awards and recognitions for his work, including: election as a fellow of the American Agricultural Economics Association in 2006 and of the International Association of Agricultural Economists in 2009. In 2007, he was elected to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences as a Foreign Fellow and named the “2010 Outstanding Alumnus” of North Carolina State University. He was the president of the International Association of Agricultural Economists from 2003 to 2006.
Before joining the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Pingali was the director of the Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
The One Health Center is a center of expertise within the University of California Global Health Institute, jointly housed at UC Riverside and UC Davis. The objective of the center is to assess and respond to global health problems arising from the human-water-animal-food interface and to design, implement, and evaluate practical, cost-effective, and sustainable solutions that focus on the foundations of health in collaboration with partners around the world.