With growing public confusion and questions about food production, the real story must be told by those who produce the food.
To help maintain a safe, abundant and affordable food supply, pork producers need to become engaged in the public discussion on food production, says Rob Aukerman, president, Elanco Animal Health. “It is time that those of us in food production act to dispel the myths that exist about food production.”
Aukerman has spoken often and broadly on the subject and emphasizes that this is a critical point in world history. “With input and food costs rising like they are currently, it puts more people in a food-insecure situation,” he says.
The world population is projected to climb to 9 billion by 2050. Currently, there are 1 billion people not getting enough to eat. “That means we will need to double food production by 2050,” Aukerman says.
With malnutrition claiming 25,000 lives per day, or about 9 million annually, the time to act is now, according to Aukerman. That action must include existing and new technologies.
Farmers and livestock producers are trusted by the public to produce safe food and to do it responsibly, he points out. For this reason, their voices are crucial to address the public to correct the myths that abound about food production. “We have a window of opportunity and we must act now to confront the misconceptions,” he says.
Among his suggestions, he says producers should start locally by addressing the importance of food production with family members and community groups. “We all have circles of influence. From a family dinner, to a church or social group or even a speaking engagement, we all have an opportunity to impact and influence the issue.”
Aukerman encourages producers to consider hunger in the world a personal issue. “When it’s a personal issue, you have more enthusiasm and passion to find out how you can affect the hunger situation in your own communities. The need for technology and the personal right for food security are the messages we need to deliver to all who will listen.”
Elanco Animal Health has committed resources to hunger relief with a pledge to end hunger for 100,000 families. To find out more, go to http://bit.ly/moiub3.