Sustainability of population food and environment in Asia

Research Project , Research Report 2002

Hiroyuki KAWASHIMA Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, The University of Tokyo
Toru IWAMI Graduate School of Economics, The University of Tokyo


We have compared the food production in China, Japan and Thailand with that in the Western counties. We investigated population increase and food production from 19th century. Population had increased in 19th century but it has decreased in 20th century in western countries, while still increases in Asian countries. Cereal planting area has been increased both in Western and Asian countries until 1950, however, it decreases in the second half of the 20th century. Rapid increases of the cereal yield were observed in all countries in the second half of the 20th century. It seems that the world had faced serious food crisis in the first half of the 20th century. Since human can increase cereal yield by science and technology, the world would not face serious food crisis in the 21st century.


Historical viewpoint, Population, Cereal production, Arable area, Yield