Agricultural productivity growth increasing, but needs to increase more
According to Global Agricultural Productivity (GAP) Report, while the agricultural productivity growth is increasing there is a need for it to increase at a higher rate.
According to the 2019 Global Agricultural Productivity Report agricultural productivity growth – increasing output of crops and livestock with existing or fewer inputs – is growing globally at an average annual rate of 1.63 percent. However, there is a requirement for it to increase by an average annual rate of 1.73 percent to sustainably produce food, feed, fiber, and bioenergy for 10 billion people in 2050.
The report finds that the productivity growth is strong in China and South Asia, but it is slowing in the agricultural powerhouses of North America, Europe, and Latin America.
The report calls attention to the alarmingly low levels of productivity growth in low-income countries, where there also are high rates of food insecurity, malnutrition, and rural poverty.
Agricultural productivity growth in low-income countries is rising at an average annual rate of just 1 percent. The UN Sustainable Development Goals call for doubling the productivity of the lowest-income farmers by 2030.
The GAP Report was released at the World Food Prize in Des Moines, Iowa. Speakers at the GAP Report Launch event included Tim Sands, president of Virginia Tech; Miguel Garcia Winder, undersecretary for agriculture for Mexico; Rose Mwonya, vice chancellor of the Egerton University in Kenya; and Alan Grant, dean of Virginia Tech’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
The report calls for a strong focus on countries with high rates of population growth, persistent low levels of agricultural productivity, and significant shifts in consumption patterns — the primary drivers of unsustainable agricultural practices, such as converting forests to crop and rangeland.
Productivity data for the GAP Index are provided by the USDA Economic Research Service. The GAP Report is available to view and download at www.globalagriculturalproductivity.org.