Surviving in the realm of the 21st century global economy is not an easy task for SMEs. Developing in a new environment, they have to face a number of entirely new challenges. Since most of these problems are related to not only economic, but also social and ecological issues, a complex approach towards the new issues based on sustainability and a proper resource allocation must be developed.
Combined with the effects of the climate change and the corresponding issues with the crops, the increasing growth of the population is obviously one of the greatest concerns (Slaght 2012). Among the possible solutions, the idea of investing into economic growth in general should be mentioned.
The specified solution can be seen as quite valid in the context of smaller agricultural cities and states. However, the specified solution works well only for the regions that already thrive on their agriculture related business. For industrial states, the solution is much more complex and requires that sustainable product consumption must be adopted.
The rivalry for resources, as well as the scarceness thereof should also be listed among the key concerns (Godfrey et al. 2012). Producing more food from the same amount of land, therefore, remains the only possible solution. This solution, though, fails to capture the necessity to use exhaustive resources sustainably and, therefore, may lead to a complete drainage of exhaustive resources and the extinction of a range of species.
Needless to say, the productivity of crops and livestock, which has decreased over the past few decades impressively, is also the issue of a major concern (Godfray 2012a).
This is the point, at which sustainable consumption factors in. Sustainable consumption will supposedly help reduce the resources exhaustion rates and, therefore, contribute to the environmental and economic sustainability. Motivating the entire population of the Earth to be wise in their products consumption, however, is quite a challenge.
Food security is another major concern for the people of the 21st century. As reports say, not only have the productivity rates of livestock dropped, but so has their number (Slaght 2012).
High concentration of diclopheniac and other hazardous substances in the air lead to impressive drops in the number of livestock and poultry. Increasing the potential of food yields is one of the possible solutions, yet it will be required to motivate producers and consumers of food for being responsible.
Finally, the changes in the environment have triggered a variety of plant mutations, which means that a range of agricultural processes, including the location of the plants, the fertilizing and the related processes must be redefined in accordance with the new properties of the mutated species.
Among the key solutions to the issue, the use of genetically modified crops as the means to adjust to the changing environment can be seen as the most productive. Indeed, with the introduction of the plants, which will be resistant to the climate changes occurring at present, the chances for increasing the quality and quality of crops will rise. It should be born in mind, though, that the effects of the consumption of such genetically modified crops are yet to be identified (Godfray 2012a.).
While most of the concerns regarding global food supplies revolve around the lack of food and the increasing growth of the population, the solution lies outside the agricultural area. By incorporating the ecological, economic and social perspectives of sustainability, the humankind will be able to avoid food crisis.
Godfray, H C J 2012, ‘Closing the yield gap,’ in J Slaght and A Pallant (eds.), Reading and writing source book, Garnet Education, Bristol, UK, pp. 32–34.
Godfray, H C J 2012a, ‘Dealing with the situation,’ in J Slaght and A Pallant (eds.), Reading and writing source book, Garnet Education, Bristol, UK, pp. 35–39.
Godfrey, H C, Reddington, J R, Crute, I R, Haddad, L, Mulr, J F, Pretty, J, Robinsons, S, Thomas, S M & Toulmin, C 2012, ‘The challenge of feeding 5 billion people,’ in J Slaght and A Pallant (eds.), Reading and writing source book, Garnet Education, Bristol, UK, pp. 30–31.
Slaght, J 2012, ‘Diet and sustainability key to feeding the world: A food security report,’ in J Slaght and A Pallant (eds.), Reading and writing source book, Garnet Education, Bristol, UK, pp. 28–29.