FAO working to improve drylands agriculture to boost food securityListen /
An estimated 60 per cent rise in food demands over the next 50 years will put increased pressure on natural resources, the head of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned.
Dr. Graziano da Silva said drought, desertification and rural poverty are contributing to hunger and malnutrition today, which could worsen in the future.
The FAO chief was participating in a meeting on how climate change affects nutrition, water and food security, held in New York on Thursday.
"FAO is leading development of a Near East soil information system. Its aim is to provide technical information to support sustainable management of the soil reserves in the region. We also need to adopt and scale-up good practice for sustainable production of agriculture in drylands."
Drylands are arid and semi-arid areas characterized by low and inconsistent rainfall. They comprise more than 40 per cent of the total land on the planet, according to FAO.
The agency reports that production of food and other goods and service in drylands has fallen drastically in recent decades.