What is in this article?:
- Ushering in the golden age of global agriculture?
- Energy and biotech
- One factor that could impact a bullish outlook is a 25 percent chance that a financial catastrophe in Europe could trigger another global recession in the next couple of years.
- Other factors that will maintain agriculture growth: Demand driven by global economic growth and the rise of the middle class in developing countries; the value of the dollar; global biofuels production; energy prices; and biotechnology development.
Energy and biotech
Energy prices– “At the end of the day, if you really want to know where food prices are going to go, look at oil prices, because they’re going in the same direction. Those two sectors are linked at the hip.”
Dwyer noted that the Chinese middle class will also put pressure on energy prices. “As its middle class grows, they’ll purchase more cars, which will require more energy. The same factors that are affecting agriculture are affecting energy prices.”
Biotechnology development– “With demand building around the world, we have to do one of two things, put a lot more land into production or increase yields. One way to get yields up is through biotechnology. The problem is that acceptance of biotechnology is not universal.”
Land expansion– To satisfy demand for food and fiber, increased production will come from both yield advances and more land coming into production, Dwyer says. The latter won’t happen unless producers believe that high prices are in for the long run. “In our view that is exactly what is going to happen. Much of the new growth will come from South America and the former Soviet Union.”