In this paper, we shall discuss the world food situation, the future of food provisioning in China, and whether the end of fossil fuel means global starvation.
World Food Situation
World food situation is the analysis of world food production as well as its consumption. Consumption of food products is primarily dictated by the products pricing which determines the ability of the consumer to feed. Across the globe, the food situation is also affected by the different climatic conditions that prevail and this has been a significant challenge in food production. For instance, in the semi-arid and desert climates like in North Africa, food production is predominantly low and expensive due to the absence of proper conditions to grow food (Bain et al. 2013, p. 21).
To improve diet in such areas, massive importation of grains to plant, and also availing water are challenges that lead to low food production. World food situation is also being affected by high energy prices especially in the stage of food processing. High energy prices increase the average cost of production which leads to high food prices, and when food prices go up the poor in society starve (FAO 2008, p. 18).
Urbanization is another factor which has influenced food production as many people across the globe move from agricultural economy to capitalist system. Once the youth move from the countryside to the city, labor in the farms go down, and livestock management, as well as crops, become tiresome leading to low productivity. In this paper we will discuss extensively on overall world food situation, argue how the future for food provisioning looks like, and comprehend by whether global starvation can be brought about by the end of fossil fuel.
Globalization and Food Provision
Globalization has seen effective and rapid urbanization, especially in the developing countries where food production and distribution in recent years have been predominantly under the private sector. Urbanization, which is a course of globalization, has changed the systems of food supply where mega world food chains avail food to those in the cities.
In such a scenario, if the food chain were availing foodstuffs like a burger in a third world country, only the working class could afford to mean the poor will starve hence get malnourished. Urbanization has also led to massive deforestation which leads to hostile climatic conditions. Hostile climate leads to low agricultural investment as water levels are low making it very expensive to grow food which leads to starvation for the poor.
In the urban centers, availing of local food is also a significant blow as such food is overpriced and this affects the insecure food bracket. The private sector effect on leveraging food retailers has increased due to globalization, which leads to the poor starving (Von 2007, p. 24). The private sector in food distribution in hypermarkets and other outlets only favors the rich as they have more surplus income to afford such advantages than the poor in the city who live in slums as they can barely afford a healthy meal in a day.
Impact of Poverty on Food Security
The poor in society today, especially in third world countries, are not able to invest adequately in the agricultural sector but rather produce food on a small scale. The inability to provide food in large size, therefore, leads to starvation when the weather changes to a dry season and there is no surplus produce to cover for the period.
On the other hand, the rich can invest in agriculture by buying the composite inputs for production like the best grains, livestock which provides food products in plenty. Surplus output by the rich will cover them during the dry season especially in places like Africa, and such people are safe as their strategic solutions in agriculture overfee them. Also, those in the government enjoy surplus food availability as they control government produce hence they are eaten as compared to those with no power in society who are facing starvation.
Case Studies on World Food Situation
Case studies by the United Nations food programs across the globe show that about 10 percent of the world population is faced with the problem of being undernourished especially regarding energy food intake. Also, about 25 percent of the children throughout the world face slow growth problem due to hunger signaling that there is a gap in the way food is produced in the world.
Another study shows that over 2 billion people around the globe have deficiency problems whereas others are overweight and obese due to current means of food chains in the distribution sector. All these case studies insinuate that world food situation is different across people as well as countries.
Starvation and death of children are also caused by the war in countries like Syria and Somalia where the distribution of food commodities is continuously under threat. In countries where fighting is still prevailing, agricultural activities are hard to run to produce enough food for the people, and such states rely on relief food from world organizations like the United Nations.
The overweight and obese appear to have overfed themselves, but in the real sense, they are affected by food deficiency. Conditions of being overweight and obese mostly look to the rich kids who have plenty of food as a luxury at the same time with little activities to perform.
Food Provisioning in China
China is a country that has been faced with cases of food insecurity in the past but has taken several measures since the 1980s to eradicate the problem. Henceforth, China has fed over a fifth of the world's population from less a small proportion of world croplands which is very commendable. Due to this analysis, China can oversee its food security in the fourth coming future as they have been able to produce a surplus from its agricultural sector.
However, China's food security is still a question to be answered as the population of the country is rapidly growing with exceeding the change in the climate as well as other factors such as land (Ye et al. 2013, p. 368). The quality of land is uneven across China hence food production is not uniform in the country as only a few counties especially in the northeastern part of China support massive agricultural production.
The availability of land poor in nutrients for the growth of grains and other foods is thus limited within a small area of land in proportion to the large population of China. Farming land in the north and west of China is cold and dry during the planting season which poses a significant threat to the massive production of food. The increasing expansion of cities into the land previously used for farming is also a considerable challenge towards food security in China as only about 15 percent of the country's total area is the only part used in agriculture.
Extensive poverty, especially in the western parts of China, has given a massive challenge in the agricultural sector. The counties in the west of China are less developed, and the soil is degraded making it hard to increase food surplus.
Food provision in China is likely to go high in some regions of the country in comparison to others. In areas of China like the North plain, Sichuan basin, southern China, and the northeast plain, production of food will be very high in the future hence food provision in such regions will be high (Cui et al. 2008, p. 521).
Such zones have, therefore, been prospected to be essential import locations for food to other places in the country which lack adequate food. Furthermore, some parts of China have been identified to show less margin of food productivity in the future. The southeast China and some parts of central China have been determined to have the lowest overall agricultural production in the future hence proper policies must be put in place to change the problem, and focus on food security for future days.
Mean centers for croplands in China have affected the movement of people as well due to high economic activities in such areas. In the southeast parts of China provinces, many people have moved towards such places and have influenced conversion of farmland into the construction of new houses for the immigrants. About China's food security, regeneration of cropland to extend cities will affect the surplus production of food in the future days of China.
In a broader view, if all the mean farmlands in China are overtaken by cities then the food future if the country is at risk and the Chinese people are most likely to starve in the future. The country's dependency on fast food is expected to worsen shortly as the nation mainly produces proteins and calories. If the nation continues with high pesticides use, use of unsafe additives and contamination of heavy metals as well as misuse of variety medicines will lead to the production of unhealthy livestock products which may end up killing the people. Unsafe food is not vital for the future, and the trend can lead to food insecurity.
The Future of Food Provisioning and the End of Fossil Fuel
Nevertheless, China has in recent years put in measures in its crop production. The use of sustainable means to prevent crops from diseases has been proved to help food production in the future hence China is prospecting for a secure food future. The invention of new methods of controlling insects and weeds as well as the control of fungi from plants in the future secures the plants to better immunity, and better photosynthesis is hence increasing yields (Lam, Remais, Fung, Xu, and Sun 2013, p. 2048). The advanced methods of food productivity will, therefore, lead to a well-fed China in the next 15 years to come.
An end to the use of fossil fuels in the agricultural sector across the globe may lead to world starvation. Fossil fuels include oil, natural gas, and coal are primarily involved in many aspects of food production. For instance, oil in the form of petroleum is used to run tractors in the farms during planting. Petroleum is also used in pumping irrigation water in farms which is vital for food production in various countries, especially during the dry seasons.
Fossil fuels are also used in coming up with better fertilizers to ease on healthy crops which leads to high production. With the current climatic changes across the globe, without the use of manure, it is hard for plants to thrive (Markussen, and Østergård 2013, p. 4172). Lack of fossil fuels would, therefore, mean low growth of crops as well as small food productivity.
A lot of energy is required to prepare pesticides to be used on the farms for killing pests and promoting healthy crops for the massive production of food. Lack of fossil fuels would mean that plants will be directly exposed to pests which will then feed on the crops destroying them. Destroyed crops will yield low food production which will be inadequate for everyone leading to starvation.
On a different perspective, low food production would mean low food supply which would lead to high food prices. Hiked prices would then cause the rich to access the food leading to the poor starving eventually.
However, lack of fossil fuel cannot lead to starvation as other means of renewable energy would be employed. Solar energy can be channeled to the production of pesticides and fertilizers leading to great produce (Gelfand et al. 2013, p. 415). Hydroelectric power can be deployed in the processing of farm produce leading to the high availability of food to all hence depletion of fossil fuels cannot possibly lead to global starvation.
The overall food situation is varying across Nations of the globe. The developed countries have more food security than the third world states which are still struggling with many developmental aspects. Developing countries are still fighting diseases leave alone food deficiency whereas developed countries are focusing on food production which differentiates food situations in those countries.
Due to the current food productivity in China, the future of the country is most likely to be food secure. The end of fossil fuels would quickly be replaced by other energy sources such as hydroelectric power as well as renewable energy and hence no starvation would result.
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