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In his article published in National Geographic entitled “The End of Plenty,” Joel K. Bourne Jr. discusses the pandemic that people throughout the world face when it comes to meeting the challenges of finding enough food for sustenance. This article sheds a clear light on the struggles many people face and the types of action that can help address the issue. Bourne puts clearly into perspective the privileges of people in developed countries and how the United States and countries like it compare to the devastation of living in a third-world nation. But his article isn’t just about the need for food in these places, it is also about the results of the overindulgences of those who lived in privileged nations. He sheds light on the current incompetence to harvest one’s own food from the land around them, and this has real consequences for suffering nations. This article serves as a wake-up call that developed nations need to take on the responsibility of consuming in a more sustainable manner, and it will take real reform in order to meet this outcome. [“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
Bourne mentions the skyrocketing price of food that Americans began to notice between 2005 and 2008. This brought the attention to Americans that the current way of growing, processing and delivering food to each American’s dinner plate isn’t the best way to live. The level of consumption has been too high, and the level of carryover stockpiles has decreased to an all-time low. This is because people have been eating more than what is produced, drawing on the reserves, limiting the supply and, therefore, increasing the price for food. The scariest bit of information is the rate at which the world is populating compared to the increase in food production. But the price isn’t only increasing for those in developed countries; it’s also going up for those who have a harder time affording food. While those in developed nations have to dig deeper to pay for their mean, those in third-world nations have no choice but to stare at an empty plate.
One of the most devastating aspects to the fact that these needy people are unable to have food at a reasonable price, is that about 50 to 70 per cent of their money goes towards paying for food as it is. Now that these prices have increased by so much, many of them aren’t able to afford to spend any money on food. Despite the Global Recession, the prices that were seen around 2005 have been largely unchanged. “Even though prices have fallen with the imploding world economy, they are still near record high, and the underlying problems of low stockpiles, rising population, and flattening yield growth remain,” (2). This means that if a massive recession can’t drop the prices, then not much can. Perhaps the recession actually acted to simmer the price inflation down. Once the global economy fully recovers, those prices could be skyrocketing even more.
The question remains about what the world can do with the rapidly rising costs. There is an increasing concern, given the fact that the world’s population is set to burst to over nine billion by 2050. In order to address the future need, there is a requirement for production to double by 2030. And nobody really knows what will happen if that outcome isn’t met. While there was a green revolution between the 1950s and 1990s, it would be difficult to repeat that trend, particularly with the increasing number of people demanding organically grown foods. This type of food is much less efficient than food that is grown with pesticides, as there is the need for much more land than what is needed with the latter option.
The problem appears to have been persisting since our ancestors stopped hunting and gathering and started plowing and planning about 12,000 years ago. The number of people on the planet has increased at a comparable rate as the number of developments in creating options for eating. This means that as people become better at finding ways to produce food, the population will grow anyway, and take away any advantage that the growing innovation had created. For example, if food production increases, prices will drop and people in Third World Countries will be able to afford more food. This will increase the survival rate, which will increase the population – due to the very fact that those people are living into adulthood and living longer – by providing a greater opportunity for people to reproduce. Those new babies will be more likely to survive, and in turn they will go on to make babies of their own. As long as they are able to afford the food that is available to them, they will continue to reproduce at a rapid rate. This new batch of babies will demand food, raising price again – and so on.
The issue appears to have no end, and some nasty critics of creating more food supply have even said that such a production would increase the surplus population, such as what was depicted in Charles Dickens’ “The Christmas Carol,” (4). So in an effort to ensure the greatest good for the greatest number of people, some might consider feeding all the needy only exacerbates the problem, causing people to grow up in misery. [Need an essay writing service? Find help here.]However, as long as there are mouths to feed, and the world population isn’t doomed to die out, every effort should be made to sustain the lives of as many people as possible. And if the world’s population reaches 100 billion and there is no more room to produce food, then there would be the need to come to a new solution. People might wonder if Scrooge is right, and that there should have been an end to feeding everyone in every nation, but only the wickedest person would say that today needs to see the end to producing enough food for the Third World. But before it comes to that, a new way of food production needs to come on board to spur on the next Green Revolution.