Land Planning Summit proposed for next century's food security
Within a few decades agricultural land for food production will be one of the most valuable minerals in the world. The world population is currently increasing by a million every four days.
Estimates indicate that the South African population by 2050 will be approximately 85 million people. This means that South Africa alone has to make provision to feed an additional 35 million people over the next 38 years. This represents an annual population growth of more than 920 000 people.
This population will not only be claiming their right to be provided with food for the sake of survival, but they will also demand to be supplied with water, housing and jobs.
This reality will require enormous challenges. Existing housing options will nearly have to double. The trend in South Africa is ground low-cost housing or informal settlements that extend over large areas. Additional land for housing will be required and will be most likely be taken from current productive agricultural land. This means less agricultural land will be available while more food needs to be produced. As it is, South Africa is a marginal agricultural land with unpredictable climate, and it may not be possible to ensure higher production from existing agricultural resources.
Therefore, TAU SA is of the opinion that land must be regarded within the economic environment, rather than to look at it from an emotional political point of view. Especially Africa 's history has shown that a country tends to fall into instability, even revolution, when food supply comes under pressure. It is a reality that South Africa already could face food shortages within the next four decades.