Humboldt Forum for Food and Agriculture Declaration on Water and Food
Currently, about one billion humans are undernourished. The prospects for achieving world food security in the next decades are bleak. Global food demand is likely to double in the first half of the century. As a consequence, prices of key agricultural commodities may be expected to be 50 to 100 percent higher towards the end of this decade than they were after the turn of the millennium. Higher food prices would dramatically increase the number of undernourished, and they have the potential to trigger violent food riots and mass migration away from food insecure countries.
Agriculture withdraws about 70% percent of all fresh water. In the past agricultural production growth has always been paralleled by increasing water withdrawals for farming. Therefore, future food production growth is increasingly constrained by water. Humboldt Forum for Food and Agriculture (HFFA) released a declaration on "Water and World Food Security" on the 2010 World Water Day.
It calls for:
• Additional R&D investment in for more efficient water institutions.
• Increasing water efficiency of crops through increased investment in plant breeding research and water infrastructure.
• A liberal international agricultural trade system such that food can flow freely from areas with abundant water and other natural resources to where it is needed
• Pricing water such that it reflects its value to society.
• Emphasis on water and world food security in the international policy debate.
HFFA also calls for a global summit on water and world food security. It also proposes to create an international A25 group which, much like the G20, develops implements and coordinates international efforts to alleviate hunger around the globe.
Berlin Declaration: www.humboldtforum.org
Mathis Brauchbar, Media Relations