The Future of Food.
This has been the topic of an interactive campaign led by the National Geographic magazine over the past year. Through imagery, stories, and conversations, the campaign engages our global community on this increasingly urgent topic. Where does our food come from? Why do we eat what we eat? And how can we possibly feed our growing planet?
These are questions A4NH scientists have been exploring since we began our work in 2012. In fact, the issue is so important that the National Geographic Society decided in October 2014 to pick up where the campaign left off and launch a multi-year commitment to continue exploring topics related to food security.
They are currently hosting an exhibit at the National Geographic Museum in Washington, D.C. that highlights some of this ongoing work entitled, “FOOD: Our Global Kitchen.” The exhibit discusses production systems throughout the world and challenges to sustainability of many of these systems. It discusses the food requirements for a growing population and natural, political, and physical constraints to this supply. It outlines a few of the impacts of dietary and lifestyle choices in terms of global food availability as well as nutrition and health.
As part of a trip to view the exhibit, The Washington Center requested a more in-depth presentation on Food Security at their offices. On January 28th, they invited an A4NH researchers from IFPRI’s Markets, Trade, and Institutions Division, Summer Allen, to present as part of the National Geographic Global Food Tour. Allen discussed the constraints to producing and supplying enough food at the household level and global scale, how trade affects the availability of nutritious food, and the variety of groups working on various components of this topic. She gave a brief overview of IFPRI’s work to address these constraints and several examples from the A4NH program. Given the previous lack of exposure to this topic by many in the room, the interest level was very high and participants were excited to hear about IFPRI’s work in this area.
Follow the food conversation at the National Geographic website: http://food.nationalgeographic.com/