Food systems and natural resources

The IRP Food Systems and Natural Resources report assesses the current status and dynamics of natural resource use in food systems and their environmental impacts, identifying opportunities to move towards more resource-smart food systems. It responds to policy relevant questions like what do sustainable food systems look like from a natural resource perspective? How can resource efficiency improvements be made to enhance food security? How to steer transition towards sustainable food systems? Moreover, it looks at food as a crucial connection point (a ‘node’) where various societal issues coincide, such as human dependence on natural resources, the environment, health and wellbeing. Rather than looking separately at resources such as land, water and minerals, the IRP has chosen a systems approach. The report looks at all the resources needed for the primary production of food, as well as for other food system activities (e.g. processing, distribution) considering not only the set of activities, but also the range of actors engaged in them and the outcomes in terms of food security, livelihoods and human health.

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