You’ve heard it before: In order to feed a growing global population, we need to produce more food. Conventional methods and GMO crops are often touted as the solution to increasing yields, but a new paper suggests instead that we reexamine the question.

Bahadur et al compare global agricultural production statistics to the diet recommended by nutritionists, and find that current food production is far out of line with guidelines for healthy eating. “Results show that the global agricultural system currently overproduces grains, fats, and sugars while production of fruits and vegetables and protein is not sufficient to meet the nutritional needs of the current population (Bahadur et all, 2018).”

Dr. Andrew Smith, Rodale Institute Chief Scientist, said “The Green Revolution has brought about a decline in global pulse (legume-protein) production in favor of grains, mostly corn, that is one reason for lack of protein production. We’re overproducing right now. The imbalance between food production and nutritional needs must be addressed when considering connections between farming systems and human health.”

Read the full paper
For more updates on Rodale Institute research and programming, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.