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[Report] SENEWS-2013-01-29

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[Report] SENEWS-2013-01-29

本帖最后由 qingchengshan 于 2013-2-16 15:56 编辑

SENEWS-20130129 Report


Agricultural  Report


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From VOA Learning English, this is the Agricultural Report in Special English.

A new report says up to half of all food is wasted. The British-based Institution of Mechanical Engineers says that must change, if the world is to feed its growing population.

Every year the world produces about 4 billion tons of food. The report says between a third and a half of it goes to waste. It says that in Southeast Asian countries, between 37-80% of total rice production is lost.

Colin Brown helped write the report for the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. He says a lot of rice is lost, because of how it is harvested, stored, and transported.

“(Food) is trying to rot all the time, so you’ve got to keep it dry, you’ve got to keep it cool and you’ve got to transport it and use it as quickly as possible. So I think when you haven’t got the infrastructure, you haven’t got the railways, you haven’t got the shipping, you’re doing damage to it every time you move it."

In developed economies, the report says, more efficient farming methods ensure that more food reaches markets. Still, Colin Brown says millions of tons of food is thrown away because it is passed its sale-by date or because of other reasons.

“Certainly once you get it to the supermarket, they have very high standards about what it ought to look like, never mind about how it ought to taste or whether it’s edible or valuable. But exactly how it ought to look. And so we throw a lot away just because it’s not cosmetically attractive."

Richard Dodd is a spokesman for a group that represents supermarkets in Britain. He says the stores are not to blame, they are only following European Union marketing rules. He says stores have been pushing for an easing of the rules, and that is taking place.

Many aid organizations welcome the report. They say it shows the huge amount of food being wasted, at a time when millions of people do not get enough to eat. The group Save the Children says there is enough food in the world to feed every child, yet 2.3 million children still die every year as a result of hunger. The report says large amounts of land, energy, fertilizer and water are lost in the production of food. But Colin Brown says that can be solved.

“The very positive message here is that while we’re losing so much in waste, the population growth and the demand for food across the world - we can meet it if we just reduce the waste. We don’t need to cut down lots more forests and plant a lot more crops."

Experts are predicting that the world population will reach 9.5 billion by 2075. The report says reducing the amount of wasted food must be part of the plan to meet that demand.

And that’s the VOA Special English Agricultural Report. To read, listen and learn English with our programs and activities, go to learningenglish.voanews.com. You can also connect with us on LinkedIn at VOA Learning English. And you can learn with our captioned videos at the VOA Learning English Channel on Youtube. I am Jim Tedder.

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