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Intensive farming of animals in 2020



Intensive farming of animals in 2020



Outlook on Agriculture 29(1): 15-23



Several factors will be important in determining the future of the intensive livestock industry. One is the way in which world population changes. Today, there are about 5.9 billion people in the world, 800 million of whom are hungry. In the future, the world population is expected to stabilize somewhere between 8 and 11 billion. Food production will have to increase by at least 40%, and maybe as much as 80%, to meet this increase. The demand for meat from feedlot cattle and intensively reared pigs and poultry is likely to rise. A second influence is the way investments are made in new technologies. Today's investments will yield tomorrow's technologies, and we should be able to identify some imminent changes by examining present venture capital investment portfolios. Another factor is the attitude that the large corporate meat and livestock companies have towards their industry. These large companies control and own a large part of the industry, and their attitudes and business structure help to determine the behaviour of the rest of the industry. Their behaviour is being affected by public attitudes towards big business and modern technologies. This paper focuses on some of the up-and-coming technologies within the context of that social and business structure. The technologies and potential changes described in this paper are new animal feed technologies, growth hormone transgenics, livestock breeding, nutraceuticals, livestock pharmaceuticals, segregated early weaning, legislation on biotechnology, the structure of the intensive livestock industry, and public attitudes towards biotechnology and the intensive livestock industry.

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Accession: 003480755

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DOI: 10.5367/000000000101293004


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