Flury&Giuliani GmbH, CH-8092 Zurich

Synergies and trade-offs with regard to ensuring food security and the efficient use of resources

In Switzerland, agriculture and the food industry are facing major challenges, as is society in general. The gap between desired and achievable levels of food production is growing wider, since ensuring sufficient food supplies for a growing population requires a constant increase in production while at the same time it is necessary to reduce the use of resources. By applying a dynamic simulation model to the situation in Switzerland it was possible to quantify the trade-offs and synergies between environmental and production outcomes with a time horizon of 2050. The aim of this project was to identify the key conditions for ensuring both long-term food provision and the efficient use of resources. The main finding arising from the application of the model was that Swiss agriculture has the potential to reconcile the aims of food provision and environmental protection; however, implementing the key conditions will depend inter alia upon technical and organisational progress that goes beyond the currently foreseeable possibilities.

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