The world will need 70 per cent more food, as measured by calories, to feed an expected global population of 9.6 billion in 2050, according to the United Nations sponsored World Resources Institute.

The new report, titled World Resources Report: Creating a Sustainable Food Future highlights the efficiency of vegetable crops in providing calories for a growing global population, as well as recommending that modern farmers switch their focus towards sustainably managing existing production. 

“When you look at the amount of inputs such water, fertiliser and energy which is used to produce meat and dairy products, vegetables and horticultural products perform very efficiently as the plant does not have to be grown, fed to an animal then converted to food,” said AUSVEG Environmental Spokesperson Mr Jordan Brooke-Barnett. 

AUSVEG is the leading voice in horticulture, representing 6,000 vegetable and 3,000 potato growers. 

“The findings contained within the report reflect the priorities of Australian vegetable industry’s EnviroVeg program, which aims to promote environmental best practices,” said Mr Brooke-Barnett.

“Meeting the challenges of environmental sustainability outlined in the report will challenge agricultural industry members and consumers alike to assess their consumption and production methods, promoting production methods and products which minimise environmental impact,” said Mr Brooke-Barnett.

According to the report, most of the world’s people consume more milk and meat than nutritionally necessary and obtaining calories and protein through animal products is also highly inefficient in terms of resource use. The most efficient sources of meat such as chicken only convert around 11 per cent of the food and water they consume into human food, while beef is particularly inefficient at 1 per cent.

“The vegetable industry in Australia can be confident that it is one of the most efficient producers of food on the planet, due to extended investment in Research and Development, coupled with programs such as EnviroVeg.”

“The EnviroVeg Program allows growers to measure and improve their environmental performance and promotes sustainable management strategies,” said Jordan Brooke-Barnett.

For further information on the EnviroVeg Program and other vegetable industry environmental management initiatives visit To access the ‘World Resources Report: Creating a Sustainable Food Future’ visit 


MEDIA CONTACT:  Jordan Brooke-Barnett, Environment Coordinator, AUSVEG
Phone: (03) 9882 0277 Mobile: 0404 772 308 Email: