'Peak Farmland' -- As Crop Yields Rise And Population Growth Slows

"OSLO -- The amount of land needed to grow crops worldwide is at a peak and an area more than twice the size of France can return to nature by 2060 due to rising yields and slower population growth, a group of experts said on Monday."

"The report, conflicting with U.N. studies that say more cropland will be needed in coming decades to avert hunger and price spikes as the world population rises beyond 7 billion, said humanity had reached what it called 'Peak Farmland'.

More crops for use as biofuels and a shift towards more meat consumption in emerging economies such as China or India - demanding more cropland to feed livestock - would not offset a fall from the peak driven by improved yields, it calculated."

Alister Doyle reports for Reuters December 17, 2012.

Source: Reuters, 12/18/2012