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Global Land and Food in the 21st Century: Trends and Issues for Sustainability

This report projects agricultural production and demand, as well as land use, patterns to 2050 rather than 2010, the standard time horizon for such projections. This longer time scale is necessary to capture crucial, slow-acting trends or long-delayed situations which nevertheless bear heavily on the visions and actions which we need to adopt today. These include probable reductions in the growth of population and per capita food consumption, widening disparities between regional food demand supply capacities, impending biophysical limits to the continued expansion of cultivable land, and possible production constraints due to other natural resource problems. This study is part of a wider systematic exploration of sustainable futures in the PoleStar project.