‘The Crop of the Future’
According to the World Economic Forum, 690 million people went hungry in 2019 stunting the growth and future prospects of 144 million children.
Climate change is also affecting rivers and oceans while multiplying pests and diseases.
Evolution Biologist, Futurist and Author Dr Elisabet Sahtouris says small farms need our support now more than ever for a food secure future.
“Years ago, the UN published a document saying that the only secure food future for the world lies in small local farms.”
“That means local farms I grew up with – where the plants and animals fed each other and the water cables improved the soil over time, nothing was lost on those farms.”
The focus on monoculture crops threatens the survival of the world’s smaller farmers, she says.
“It was always a bad idea and that the separation of plants and animals in agriculture caused two problems from one original solution because you then had to feed both the plants and the animals artificially – it doesn’t make any sense.”
Dr Elisabet Sahtouris has been an avid supporter of local food systems for most of her life as she shared the world she grew up in with participants attending the Global Breadfruit Summit last week.
“We have to encourage small farming, encourage local food self-sufficiency and then make it a basic requirement that ulu (breadfruit) trees wherever they can be grown in the world should be part of that food forestry.”
“People love food, they love eating and they love cooking! Cooking shows could be cooking with ulu recipes, if we informed them of ulu and gave them the option, the problem is going to be the availability of the ulu.”
Dr Elisabet Sahtouris said a concern is improving the accessibility of breadfruit.
“Once we have perhaps a clearing house of some kind online for the value added products that can be shipped and I would think about possibly associating with eBay to make ulu products more widely quickly available, then we can host the cooking contests and the cooking shows on YouTube – the possibilities are just endless.”