High-input, resource intensive farming systems have substantially increased food production, but at a high cost to the environment. Credit: IPS
– Massive agriculture intensification is contributing to increased deforestation, water scarcity, soil depletion and the level of greenhouse gas emission, the United Nations warns.
To achieve sustainable development we must transform current agriculture and food systems, including by supporting smallholders and family farmers, reducing pesticide and chemical use, and improving land conservation practices, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) director-general on May 30 said in Brussels addressing European lawmakers.
José Graziano da Silva stressed that while high-input and resource intensive farming systems have substantially increased food production, this has come at a high cost to the environment.
“Today, it is fundamental not only to increase production, but to do it in a way that does not damage the environment. Nourishing people must go hand in hand with nurturing the planet,” he said.
This is in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, he added. “We have to move from input intense to knowledge intense production systems.”