How do we nourish people and the planet?
By Krisy Gashler
Edward Mabaya grew up as one of 10 children on a smallholder farm in Zimbabwe. As his family adopted better seeds, explored new technologies and tested improved management strategies, the farm produced enough to feed everyone, and then enough to send the children to school. Mabaya, M.S. ’98, Ph.D. ’03, ran with the opportunities he was given but has never forgotten where he came from.
Now a research professor in the Department of Global Development, Mabaya’s work centers on increasing food production in Africa, where 70% of the people are under 30 and the continent’s population is expected to double by 2050.
“Africa’s population is growing faster than any other continent, but food production has not been increasing,” Mabaya said. “This spells catastrophe for the future.”
Countries and people around the globe face the same stark dilemma: how to feed their growing populations while climate change ravages the agri-food systems needed to nourish us all.