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Factors Behind Lack of Food Security

food availability which is considered difficult to at least match the capacity of the population.


Current food availability

Today, food security is the most discussed issue in the world. How not, food becomes one of the primary needs that have an important role in human life. In fact, food becomes a condition for people to be able to maintain their lives. It is not uncommon for food security to be the most highlighted sector in the world. In addition, the food crisis has spread to various countries in the world to become a global problem.

When talk of a food security crisis is hotly discussed, another thing that is also in the spotlight is agriculture. Agriculture is one of the largest sources of food for human life. Certainly, from year-to-year food productivity from agriculture is required to be increased. This is because the growing population makes various food producing sectors in each country must be able at least to compensate for the capacity of their respective populations.

On the other hand, the increase in food needs that occur every year will certainly cause also an increase in the price of food commodities so that as a consequence, the number of poor and starving people will increase. The World Food Organization, FAO (2009) estimates that around 1.02 billion people worldwide are currently experiencing food shortages and hunger. This argument is reinforced by a statement from the Population Fund (2000) which predicts that by 2050 there will be an increase in the population of about 2.32 billion people spread around the world.

Looking at the data, of course, this makes every country have to turn their brains so that food needs can be met for all people. However, if we look at the facts, land that should be used for the growth of food commodities, precisely now many are made into various infrastructures for industrial purposes. If this is constantly allowed, it is not unlikely that the world's food productivity will decline. When food productivity decreases, this can make the problem more complex because it will also affect other sectors such as economic, social, and political problems.

What is to worry about here is when food sufficiency becomes an unsecured thing as food availability in a sustainable time. Moreover, food development in recent years is in a situation of concern that makes various countries forced to import from other countries to meet the needs of food. A real example of this can be seen from the situation in Indonesia. Indonesia, which is famous for its agrarian country, has now started importing rice and other food commodities from outside. When Indonesia began to import, in this case rice imports, it would certainly affect the welfare of farmers where this situation allows them to lose their livelihoods and have difficulties in economic matters.

Then what is the main cause behind the food crisis

land conversion

land conversion

From the above exposure, we know that food security in a country becomes a thing to be taken into account because it has influence to various other sectors. However, we all must realize, sometimes food security is difficult to be stable and still provide sufficient availability for every human being. There will always be a variety of disorders or things that become obstacles to this food security. Here are some factors or arguably triggers of a lack of food security globally, including:

1. Population Growth Rate

As explained above, population growth is one of the factors that can lead to decreased food security. It can be said that the rate of population growth should be proportional to the demand for food needs. The question is whether food supplies can keep pace with the population? Logically, when the population is increasing, then the arable land will also be widely used for the needs of the population, say housing. If the arable land is even more diverted for development, automatic land for food purposes or in other words for farming will be less and can cause food supplies to decline.

2. Land conversion

Today's industrial era makes development happen everywhere. Increasingly advanced technology allows the creation of infrastructure to be developed. Undeniably, the goal to advance a country can be done through the development of this infrastructure. However, overdevelopment and without thinking about the impact on the surrounding environment can be fatal. Erosion can be a side effect of this development. When the transfer of land function results in erosion, it will affect the quality of the soil that becomes degraded or even make the soil infertile so it is not suitable for agriculture. Even if you force the polluted land for planting, maybe the crop will fail.

3. Price Instability

The amount of food supply is inversely proportional to the population, in which case the number of people passing through food availability can cause price stability to be disrupted. This is because when food supplies are limited or even in decline, the foodstuffs will be a rare thing that makes residents as consumers vying to get the food for their needs. This condition makes the production actors increase the price of food, food supplies are difficult to obtain.

4. Climate change

In recent years, global warming has become an inevitable disaster for the world. The increase in the earth's surface temperature causes extreme climate change. This is a result of continuously increasing greenhouse gas emissions. If these conditions do not change, then the food grown will be difficult to adapt and most likely failed to harvest due to the extreme climate. In fact, Indonesia, which has a tropical climate, is currently experiencing difficulties in terms of food productivity because the weather is now difficult to predict.

Sometimes high rainfall can result in flooding due to the lack of water catchment areas. When flooding occurs, the land for agriculture becomes submerged so it cannot be used for planting. On the other hand, drought is also a factor that should not be forgotten. The amount of illegal logging leads to a decrease in water resources that ultimately makes the land dry and barren.

5. Bioenergy expansion

Energy is one of the basic needs to sustain human survival. Unfortunately, given the depletion and diminishing availability of fossil fuel resources, this forces every country to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. With the increasingly limited availability of energy from fossils, it will certainly be sought other alternative energy sources, one of which is utilizing foodstuffs. The impact is when the fulfillment of food needs is not a top priority in the utilization of foodstuffs and the formulation of policies and the development of bioenergy becomes a disruption in the running of food supply needs.

Little explanation about food insecurity

© 2021 Farhan Saidi