The unsustainable agricultural practices are the source of food problems. It is significant to consider both the food policies and practices so as to make sure that there is a sustainable food system. According to Curran, April, Abigail & Andrew (12), unsustainable food practices are the result of escalating food prices as well as food shortage. This paper will detail the unsustainable food practices that exist in the United States.
i. To examine the food practices that are unsustainable.
ii. To find out the ways in which food sustainability may be enhanced.
The Research entailed the application of qualitative research design in determining the unsustainable food practices that exist in the American society. The qualitative approach was selected as it recognizes less the subjectivity of the researcher in the study and it focuses on the relationships that exist between dissimilar variables as well as it can create a cause and effect in circumstances that are very controlled. In addition, the qualitative research design is more reliable, objective and makes the assumption that the sample represents the entire population.
Over the last few decades, there has been an increasing concern over the issue of food security in different parts of the world. Morawicki (130) asserts that unsustainable food practices are the key source of food insecurity. With the increasing population of the world, making sure that there is an adequate food supply for all people poses a serious challenge presently, as well as in the future (Curran, April, Abigail & Andrew 12). Most of the existing food practices are conceptualized as ‘coping strategies’ that do not solve the food concern for good. The challenges that are currently facing agriculture are massive. The global rise in the prices of foods is of immediate concern, which has led to emergence of food riots as well as food shortage in many nations.
Unsustainable Food Practices in the United States
1. Unsustainable Technologies
There are various food practices that are adopted by different countries which are not sustainable. New technologies have been used for the purpose of boosting agricultural production globally. Despite the effectiveness of these technologies in producing food for human beings consumption, some of them have detrimental consequences which must be addressed.
“GM foods” refers to the crop plants that are manufactured by means of the newest molecular biology technologies for the purpose of animal or human consumption. Genetic engineering has been used in the production of foods that have certain characteristics such as drought resistance. Even though GM foods can be effective and efficient in addressing the concern of food insecurity as well as address the food needs of the increasing population, there has been a lot of criticism in relation to these foods.
Groups such as environment activists and public interest groups have raised concern regarding the GM foods. Most of these foods are concentrated with pesticides, and their consumption is associated to various illnesses. In this paper, sustainable refers to the environmental and social characteristics of goods.
Biological consequences of human activities have led to changing weather patterns. Agricultural practices that employ the use of pesticides and fungicides in the control of pests has a number of consequences. Food security has approached a critical proportion for a lot of people. According to the article (Mary 18), in both Chicago and Paris cities, the residents spend about half of their incomes on food. The hiking of food prices in addition to food insecurity are currently leading to political instability. There was an outbreak of food riots in Uganda as well as in Burkina Faso.
2. Unsustainable Farming practices
Maina (2090) describes the present agricultural system as simply unsustainable. He refers it to as a "rape the planet" representation that cuts down forests so as to grow GMO soybeans which are used to feed cattle which are then turned into meet that is processed. In addition, the use of chemical pesticides is destroying the capacity of soils which results in the pollution of farms, rivers, as well as oceans. The system is simply unsustainable. It is evident that organic agriculture is not able to meet the demands of food for the ever-increasing world population as a result of the low yields which are recorded.
3. Climate Change
Climate change is a major concern in the origin of unsustainable food practices in the United States. Climate change occurs as a result of a change in factors that exist in the natural environment. Land has also been cleared in many parts of the United States so as to provide lands that can be used for the purpose of producing food by means of agricultural practices. This is because clearing natural forests for the purpose of growing food crops result to negative effects on the climate of an area. It also leads to destruction of water sources. Even though the clearing of land for agricultural purposes addresses the immediate need of food supply, it does not address the future needs of food for the increasing population, and it is therefore not sustainable.
Whereas the fossil fuels industry its well-oiled and well-funded campaign to sustain an opposition to cries regarding climate change, the effects of climate change are apparent, which results into food insecurity (Morawicki 35).
The way in which food production takes place can have a negative health risk to those who consume it. However, there are many people who continue to feed people even in hospitals with GM foods, which are saturated with pesticides, and which are as well related with various diseases such as cancer. This poses a severe health risk to patients and the staff.
In conclusion, according to the findings presented in this research, it is evident that people ought to adopt practices that will lead to sustainable production of foods. There is need for both the government as well as different organizations to fight for the sustainable production of food to the increasing world population.
i. Environmental conservation: Steps must be taken so as to conserve the water resources that are found in the U.S. soil.
ii. Sustainable agriculture decreases the harm that happens to the environment. For example, elimination of polluting substances like pesticides help in conserving the environment.
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