Here is the opening paragraph of Sir Gordon Conway’s latest book, One Billion Hungry: Can We Feed the World? Conway is Professor of International Development at Imperial College in London and is recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on global food needs.
Hunger (from the Old English hungor) is an evocative, old Germanic word meaning “unease or pain caused by lack of food, craving appetite, debility from lack of food.” In the developed countries it is a feeling of slight discomfort when a meal is late or missed. By contrast, in the developing countries hunger is a chronic problem. Television images convey the realities of hunger—emaciated and starving children–in war-torn countries or in the aftermath of droughts, floods or other calamities. Yet for a billion people—men, women, and children–hunger in the developing countries is a day-to-day occurrence, both persistent and widespread.
The book goes on to lay out the formidable challenges of feeding our global family by 2050. Yet, at the same time, he reminds us that there are reasons for optimism, as well. The book is based on evidenced-based proposals for sustainable methods of feeding the hungry. Linking evidence to policy and action, One Billion Hungry is both inspirational and pragmatic.
As Rajiv Shah, Administrator of USAID states in the book’s forward, Gordon’s new book like his Doubly Green Revolution, is an invaluable voice in the fight against hunger.