Demographic Transition and Global Food Production


DemographicTransition and Global Food Production

Thispaper eludes the demographic transition and global food productionand the food security goals that have been adapted to have a stablepopulation. Demographic transition involves changes from high birthrate and death rates to low birth and death rates which depictsprogresses from a pre-industrial to an industrialized economic system(Hodgson,1988). Thistransition is illustrated through the demographic transition model.The demographic process was established by Warren Thompson whoobserved changes, transitions in birth and death rates as nationsindustrialized throughout the decades.

Thefour phases of demographic transition include (Szreter,1993),

  1. Pre-industrial society. This is whereby death rates and birth rates are high and roughly balanced. In the 18th century this was assumed to have ended in the Western Europe. The population is usually slow in this stage due to the constrain in the society in relation to food production. Hence, the society needs to adapt new ways to increase food production.

  2. Developing country. This is whereby death rates reduce because of improved food supply, good environment which favor conditions for human beings to live well. The improvements which favor human life are farming such as crop rotation and cross breeding.

  3. In the third stage, there is stability due to reduction in death rates. This is attributed by good fertility methods that reduce these deaths. For instance in rural areas, guardians may come to an agreement that they don’t need many children in order for them to be well at old age. This is because they have confidence that few children will be able to manage family affairs. Another example is that the law allows all children to be educated. This has enabled the society to have professional leaders who take up after those who have retired.

  4. In stage four birth rates are both low hence the population becomes high and stable. The factors that lead to low birth rates are reduction in the number of diseases and high food supply. The reasons why the birth rate is low would be because of the knowledge about contraceptives in women which makes them focus on employment opportunities.

Accordingto demographers the factors that led to the decline of the CDR inphase two are due to these two factors

  1. Better ways of food supply attributed to high production in farming methods and good transportation which prevents death due to lack of water and hunger

  2. Improvements in health reduce child mortality. This indicates proper handling of food, good , improved education, personal hygiene, improvements in water supply and social status of mothers.

Inphase three the factors that led to the decline of the CBR are

  1. Realization by parents in the rural areas that they don’t require so many children in order for them to be comfortable.

  2. Urbanization which has greatly influenced fertility and value of children in the rural areas.

  3. Parents have a role to play with the introduction of compulsory education which is not limited to reassessing the needs for their children and ability to raise them.

  4. The social status on women has led to women having less time to raise their children. Women are now able to concentrate on their careers as more opportunities have been laid down in their favor.

Thethree conditions in developed countries that have reached phase fourare higher production of food and low rates of diseases . This hasbeen effectively been practiced in the developed countries. Forexample, the in the developed countries i.e. united states they havebetter machinery that favor better control of diseases such asmalaria and cancer. Unlike in Africa majority of the developingcountries are unable to acquire this medical machinery that isessential in treating their patients. Nevertheless the developedcountries have adapted sustainable farming methods which increasefood production. For example they have good irrigation, crossbreeding and better use of machinery used in cultivating their crops(Zuckerman, 1996). In Africa, these better machinery are notadequate to sustain farming of commercial crops. Consequently Africahas failed to fully adapt good irrigation systems hence drought whichhas led to famine and hunger in their population

Anefficient program that would help in improving the conditions abovein developing countries is training farmers on good agriculturalsystems such as planting drought resistant crops which will ensurethat there is availability of food to their citizens. The trainingwill also ensure that farmers are able to observe good irrigationschemes. This can be achieved by ensuring that they store water fromwater reservoirs in order for them to water their crops. (McKinney,2012). It’s important to note that they should also be encouragedto plant commercial crops which will enable them to develop theireconomy. It is important for citizens to practice trade because itcreates employment and helps in improving their currency.

Oneprogram that helps developing countries reach food security goals isthe World Bank Group. This group aids in eradicating extreme povertyand hunger globally. It works with international community to boostincomes for the bottom 40% in each country. It emphasizes on reducingpoverty and hunger by investing in agriculture, creating jobs anduniversalizing education. In conclusion it is with no doubt that thisprogram aims in achieving better living conditions for the people whoare struggling with their daily lives especially in the developingcountries.


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D.Hodgson, (1988), `Orthodoxyand revisionism in American demography`, Population and DevelopmentReview.

S.Szreter. (1993),`The idea of demographic transition and the study of fertilitychange. A critical intellectual history`,Population and Development Review.