Farming Trends Threaten Food Security, Say Researchers

A team of researchers writing in Global Change Biology says that global food security is at increased risk from farming trends such as monocultures taking up more agricultural land and more crops relying on insects for pollination. The team analyzed UN FAO data from 1961-2016 and found that despite more land being used for agriculture worldwide, the diversity of the crops being grown has declined. Additionally, 16 of the 20 fastest-increasing crops require pollination by insects or other animals, which are themselves at risk. The researchers point out that although poorer regions of the world are at the greatest risk, the consequences of crop failure would be felt worldwide. The team concludes that care should be taken to diversify agriculture worldwide and make it more ecological, particularly by growing a diversity of crops and providing pollinator habitat.