We take it for granted that we can go to a supermarket and buy all the food we need or get it delivered. However, as we look forward, that may not always be the case.
The UK currently imports 40% of all food needs. This is likely to soon exceed 50%, because of population growth, land loss, stabilising crop yields, climate change and problems with supply chains. Food security must be a central plank of government policy. The recently published National Food Strategy (July 2021) states that “Securing the nation’s food supply has been a central role of all states since history began.” This article considers the factors affecting UK food supply.
UK population growth. There are various predictions and some suggest a possible slowdown in growth, particularly since we do not know the effect of migration policy post Brexit. However, the majority of official predictions still suggest a UK population of at least 70 million by 2030 and 77 million by 2050. UK population growth related to food importation must also take into account world population statistics. The world population in 2021 is estimated at 7.8 billion and increasing at just over 1% a year, meaning an additional 81 million a year and suggesting a world population of 9 billion by 2037.