floating gardens in Bangladesh

Floating gardens in Bangladesh. French agencies joint report Agrimonde says the state of global agriculture is better than you think. But assumptions are easily punctured, throwing human predictions off course.

What are the forces that will shape food and agriculture in 2050? Will farming be human- or robot-centered? Organic or conventional? Artisan or industrial? Will it be châteaubriand, filet mignon or, an extra helping of Soylent Green for all? Is it even conceivable that a human population of 9+ billion can sustain itself, or is global ecological collapse inevitable? Aye, Robot aside, nothing is shot with more uncertainty and grand illusion than conjuring the future. Wendell Berry, the essayist, and latter-day agrarian prophet wrote that the fetish of “crystal-balling” arises from a scarcity of jobs in the present. Maybe so in rarefied professions. But there’s no denying that future gazing is serious business aimed at riveting public attention (and research $$). As ever, there’s no shortage of future seekers competing in the public arena nowadays and the competition is fierce. TED is omnipresent! Unfortunately, the future has a habit of veering off course, heedless to the beck of human-induced models, out-gassing, and hysteria. Continue reading