Knowledge for better food systems

Showing results for: Sustainable intensification

3 September 2015

This paper, published in OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Papers is aimed at showcasing the growing evidence base on supply-side (agricultural) greenhouse gas mitigation for reducing the emissions intensity of agriculture while maintaining or increasing production. It does this by reviewing 65 recent international studies of cost-effectiveness covering 181 individual activities and by explaining some of the key concepts involved in this field.

31 July 2015

These two articles in Foreign Policy discuss the role of power and agency to solve our global water and food problems. In the first article “Don’t Let Food Be the Problem - Producing too much food is what starves the planet” Professor Olivier De Schutter reflects on lessons learnt during his work over the past 6 years as UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food. He argues that international action cannot solve the food crises without local responses. He writes “These interconnected systems of overproduction won’t feed the world.

18 June 2015

This report by the UK’s Land Use Policy Group discusses The Role of Agroecology in Sustainable Intensification and highlights agroecology as a method to safeguard UK food security. The report was prepared by the Organic Research Centre in collaboration with the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust.

29 April 2015

Twenty three African and European research partners are involved in this new long term research and innovation partnership on the sustainable intensification of the agro-food system in Africa - PROIntensAfrica. The project is funded by the EU and its focus is on sustainably improving food and nutrition security and the livelihoods of African farmers.

19 April 2015

Sustainable intensification is receiving growing attention as a way to address the challenge of feeding an increasingly populous and resource-constrained world. But are we asking too much of it? Nearly 20 years after the concept was developed, this briefing revisits the term and asks what sustainable intensification is — a useful guiding framework for raising agricultural productivity on existing arable land in a sustainable manner; and what it is not -a paradigm for achieving food security overall.

31 March 2015

This paper asks the question “Can agriculture be sustainable?”  It argues that, if we want to take a different path, we will have to make the choice to do so. It emphasises that we need to be clear that we have choices - options that need to be debated rather than subsumed in a dialogue of crisis and food shortages. The paper outlines some of these options in order to pursue a more sustainable pathway.

16 January 2015

Late December last year Tara Garnett, researcher on food systems and climate change and coordinator of the FCRN, initiated a meeting that brought together Marian Dawkins, Prof in Animal Behaviour at Oxford University, Jude Capper, researcher and livestock sustainability consultant who has worked mainly in the US, and Elin Röös, Swedish LCA researcher and the initiator of the Swedish Meat Guide,  for an informal discussion on the subject of sustainable intensification of agriculture and what that entails for the animal welfare of farm animals.

26 November 2014

No-till farming is a core principle of conservation agriculture where the soil is left relatively undisturbed from harvest to planting. This paper argues that no-till farming appears to hold promise for boosting crop yields only in dry regions, not in cool, moist areas of the world such as Northern Europe.

26 November 2014

This paper discusses paths towards a more resilient agriculture and the rationale for doing so. It emphasises the need for interdisciplinary and intersectoral collaborations in this field, moving towards “a diversity of solutions operating across scales.” The authors also critically discuss various production focused routes to food security.

25 September 2014

In this open letter a large number of civil society organisations present a critique of the use of ‘Climate Smart Agriculture’, a concept that is gaining increasing attention among governments, NGOs, academics, corporations and in international policy. They state that they have concerns around the aims of the 'Global Alliance on Climate Smart Agriculture' to establish policies to enable farming to deal with the impacts of climate change.

15 September 2014

This paper argues that a focus on increasing production in line with dominant projections of increased demand, through intensification of current industrial agricultural practices, will cause environmental damage and increase food insecurity.

5 September 2014

This new paper published in Nature Climate Change, focuses on food demand-side climate change mitigation options. It suggests that if current trends continue, food production alone will reach (if not exceed) the global targets for total greenhouse gas emissions in 2050. Diet preferences are shifting globally toward meat-heavy western foods with a high GHG-impact and this, combined with a growing global population, imply that even if we manage to increase agricultural yields (through for example sustainable intensification), this will not be enough to meet projected food demands.

9 July 2014

The Guardian recently hosted a live chat where a panel of experts joined readers online to discuss the future of sustainable agriculture in the face of changing weather driven by climate change and increasing competition for food. This article discusses 10 points that were discussed by participats.

Read the full article here.

9 July 2014

Collaborating with Asda, Sainsbury’s, Nestlé, AB Agri, Yara, BASF, BOCM Pauls, Volac and the NFU and CLA, the University of Cambridge’s Institute for Sustainable Leadership has produced a report entitled The Best Use of UK Agricultural Land which considers how to best manage the 35% difference they projected between the supply and demand of available land.

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