Chasing the Future
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Chasing the Future
information related to new technologies & innovation, developments in science and space exploration
Curated by Sílvia Dias
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Rescooped by Sílvia Dias from Tracking the Future!

The future of food

The future of food | Chasing the Future |

When three continents witnessed food riots in 2007 and 2008, we saw the international food system is not as stable as it looks. There’s unprecedented competition for food due to population growth and changing diets. Experts predict that by 2050, if things don't change, we will see mass starvation across the world.

In this documentary, George Alagiah travelled the world to unravel the complicated web of links that binds the world's food together, bringing it from farm to table. It reveals a growing global food crisis that could affect the planet in the years ahead. What can we do to avert this?

Via Szabolcs Kósa
aanve's curator insight, February 16, 2014 9:53 PM


RuthHoward's curator insight, February 17, 2014 6:38 AM

BBC doco link below regarding overconsumption on the one hand and inability to maintain the enormous variety and stocks of food that the recent food markets have enjoyed into our future. I'm a meat eater BTW. I'm not advocating everyone stop eating meat, although some do. But I do think its a worthy problem to help solve.
There will be so many solutions already being developed, how to cultivate and develop a long term plan to develop diversification of crops not reliant upon heavy oil and water production and use, that sustain populations through unpredictable climate changes with responsive agility to markets? In my mind a plan that doesn't rely on super farms, but responds to the small farmer and the local market as much as to export demand is preferable and more resilient. On that note I know the robots cometh. How to factor all of those exponential technological leaps in, to include them but not at human expense.

My notes here. Earth Policy Institute Lester Brown foresees food security as the number one challenge for affluent and non affluent countries. He's been an environmental and agricultural analyst for 50 years.

Todays modern farming techniques wont feed us by 2050 unless we double productivity/yield. The finite arable land wont support this.
In addition changing weather is destined to reduce all crop yields world wide which will increase food prices.

-Richard Warburton head of Bidwells Agribusiness predicts food and water wars.

-Maasai Chief Saamy Ole Terakuai states weather has changed. He cant use his cattle for sale, for food, nor for milk, nor use their hides. Based upon Kenya, Australia in particular is at risk.

-Waitrose Farmer UK recounts volatility in grain market in part due to climate changes.
-Oil is used in intensive agriculture for fuel, fertilisers, pesticides, packaging, processing. 100g of cheese requires 140ml of oil. One tomato grown in a greenhouse uses more than a third of a litre of oil. Oil prices inflate food prices let alone affect food production.
Cuba's economy collapsed due to their reliability upon oil. A fuel shock fuels a food shock.
A very important part of this discussion documents that fuel crops (biofuels) are replacing food crops! At huge cost to locals, workers and future food security. Demonstrating that competition between fuels (cars) and food (for people) needs monitoring, especially as it is further exacerbating the divisions between rich and poor, developed and undeveloped worlds.

-Water is then tackled as a diminishing resource. Obviously essential for food production.

-Overfishing is next. World stocks of seafood could collapse by 2048. 90% of bottom fish (bottom trawls) are already gone! 80% of UK fish species are under threat. Meanwhile the market demand for fish in the UK is greater than ever, sourcing from outside including poorer countries such as Senegal, who themselves have food shortages. Senegalese are forced to share their waters with modern european fleets-Trawlers. Actionaid who monitor overfishing, observe the unlimited trawling by europeans who are profiteering from and at the expense of the Senegalese. 3/4 global fish stock are overexploited.

-Milk and meat consumption are expanding unsustainably as developing world's incomes rise. The film states that there's not enough land to produce the meat that both the developed and developing world require. 2.3kg of grain to produce 1 kilo of chicken, 15kg of grain to produce 1 kilo of beef.


Celest Ybarra's curator insight, March 29, 2014 9:25 PM

Title: The Future of Food

Author: BBC

Main Idea: Prediction that if eating habits don't change now, there will be a mass food scarce in the future


1) The world is constantly changing and evolving over time, and if things don't change soon then we could be in serious trouble

2) A growing global crisis means that's there's competition for food and could affect the planet years ahead

3) Since food has become a commodity in other countries it makes it hard to believe that we could possibly run out in the future

Opinion: No, its factual.

Question: Why do researchers believe this theory? How can we help change this idea?

Is this article important to science?: Yes, because it can help us figure out how to not make this come true since food is such an important factor, and key, to our survival.


Rescooped by Sílvia Dias from Tracking the Future!

The Future of Artificial Intelligence

The Future of Artificial Intelligence | Chasing the Future |

Robots are here to stay. They will be smarter, more versatile, more autonomous, and more like us in many ways. We humans will need to adapt to keep up.

Via Szabolcs Kósa
luiy's curator insight, March 25, 2013 5:36 PM
New technologies, new moralities

Religious and other organizations will define and attempt to regulate the ways in which human treat humanoid robots, since they will be considered quasi-human, sentient creatures that must be treated with respect and not abused. Thus, the changing legal and social framework will deal with the proper use of robots by humans as well as the proper behavior of robots toward humans, and new sets of “post-Asimov” laws will emerge.


Finally, a few concluding thoughts. The rapid increase in the number and sophistication of autonomous systems, including humanoid robots, lead to dramatic changes in society. Robots will assume an increasing share of human work and responsibility, thus creating a major social problem with unemployment and the relations of humans and robots. I believe that new frameworks for these interactions will emerge within the next 25 to 50 years. If they do not, there may be neo-Luddite rebellions, in which humans will attempt to destroy large numbers of robots. Those of us who design, program, and implement robots have a major responsibility to assist in the creation and implementation of patterns of behavior and legal systems to ensure that robots and humans co-evolve and co-exist for the benefit of society.


Robots are here to stay. They will be smarter, more versatile, more autonomous, and more like us in many ways. We humans will need to adapt to this coming world.

Rescooped by Sílvia Dias from Tracking the Future!

The Future of Society and new ways of learning - Federico Pistono @ University Of Life Sciences Oslo

The pace of technological innovation is speeding up at an ever increasing rate. This is bringing unprecedented and incredibly rapid changes to the economy and society at large, particularly in the job market. 
Automation is removing jobs like never before, while comparatively few new jobs are being created by the new digital economy. This might be one of the greatest challenges that we've ever faced, but it could also represent our biggest opportunity. What can people and companies do right now to avoid being swept away by the exponentially increasing technologies that are coming to the market? What can governments do to provide for their people? What will be the future of work and of society? What will the transition look like, who will benefit from it, and who will be left behind? 

Via Szabolcs Kósa
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