How to Feed the World: Why Do We Eat?

A Plan for 8 Billion People and Beyond — Part 1

Marjan Krebelj

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Yousef_Masoud at Pizabay

This is a miniseries in which I’ll try to condense my study and personal experience on farming and nutrition. I want to lay down some fundamentals which I believe could and should be applied in the coming decades. I’ll try to use as much data as I can to support my claims and make an objective argument that transcends personal opinions. Links to sources will be included for your own study. However, since it is impossible to avoid leaving a personal mark on this subject, I’ll be happy to discuss my personal views within the comment section. Let’s get into it.

Part 1: Why Do We Eat — you are here now
Part 2: Our Disastrous Land Use
Part 3: Destroying the Oceans
Part 4: Is Meat Necessary?
Part 5: Cereals and Our Daily Bread
Part 6: Pulses
Part 7: Understanding the Emotional Value of Food
Part 8: One Peaceful World Diet

Food is non-negotiable. We have to eat or we die. It is the absolute foundation of our personal and collective existence and there is no way around it.

Practically all our food production is based on the use of fossil fuels which substitute human and animal labour. Before that, almost everyone had to work in a field to survive. But now these fuels seem to be running dry and even if they weren’t, their impact on the planet is disastrous. Without fossil fuels and a rapidly changing climate famine is not so difficult to imagine. We can potentially let go of certain luxuries like cheap electronics or travel, but we simply must find a way to produce food sustainably.

To have an effective conversation we need a way to simplify all of the numerous food qualities into something that is relatively easy to follow through the argument. For now, we’ll neglect culinary and aesthetic pleasures and focus on what we can measure.

Two categories are normally used; energy and nutrients. Energy is the proverbial calories of food, and nutrients are compounds our body needs for everything else (metabolic processes, regeneration, feeding the gut bacteria, etc). Nutrients include essential…

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Marjan Krebelj

Once an architect, now a freelance photographer/filmmaker with passion for words.