According to a report by the United Nations, by 2050 there will be more than 9 billion people on the planet – that’s two billion more people in just 35 years. Finding ways to feed a population of that size is a challenge that scientists all over the world are focusing on – including researchers here in the Faculty of Land and Food Systems.
We are in the unique and lucky position of having a working farm on which we can conduct food security and food sustainability research.
Through the Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at UBC Farm, we can model how food can be produced intensively and sustainably in an urban environment.
The research and teaching we’re doing at the UBC Farm is some of the most innovative in the country and has the potential to transform our world.
In this issue of Reach Out, you’ll learn more about what’s happening at the UBC Farm, as well as some of the exciting research that’s already having an impact on our communities. Gladys Oka, a Masters student in our Soil Science program, for example, found elevated levels of toxic metals at a Vancouver community garden sites. Her research was covered by several media outlets and, as a result of that exposure, the Vancouver Park Board is mandating that community gardens and local agricultural projects be planted in soil free of urban contaminants — a great example of how science can affect policy.
Our Faculty is also in the midst of working on a new strategic plan, a roadmap that will guide us through the next 5 years. Creating this plan involves taking a close look at where we’re currently at and establishing a clear focus for where we want to be. We are calling on our staff, faculty and students, as well as alumni and our industry and community partners to help us build a solid plan of action. If you are interested in providing your feedback, I welcome you to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rickey Yada, Dean
Faculty of Land and Food Systems