Few of us stop to think about food security (access to enough safe, nutritious food to live a healthy life) as the driving force behind a thriving economy. Yet leaders throughout history have recognized that food shortages spell disaster for any nation. In today’s rapidly expanding global population, food security is key to prosperity. This is why nations invest in agricultural research and development programs. Unfortunately, massive programs to build food security often fail simply because they are built on principles that create dependence and lack diversity. As a result, we create vulnerable food ecosystems that lack resilience to change.
As climate change, environmental decline, development, chronic disease and population growth continue to strain global food production efforts, it becomes increasingly clear that the technologies we need to meet growing food demands are already available. We know how to build soils, we know how to build nutrition. We know how to eat right, and keep our gut microbes healthy. Unfortunately, we choose to apply our efforts elsewhere. Cultural pressures drive us to make choices that continue to erode our ecosystems, pave up our farmland, cut down our forests, increase disparity and threaten our capacity to feed the future.
In Episode 14 of Microbes, Minerals, and Mindsets, Mary Lucero and Co-Host Tony Pranger Jr. discuss social and educational drivers that impede recognition of the need for sustainable food production. Can efforts that promote independence also support the mindsets needed to make choices that feed our families now and in the future?