Looking to the future, the changing realities of the global food and agriculture system, and the persistence of hunger in the developing world, indicate that more and more frequent successes are needed. Agriculture is increasingly driven by market demand forces, consumer preferences, regulatory scrutiny, and ethical considerations. Agriculture is far more commercial and far more globalized through domestic market growth, international trade, and global finance than ever before. Emerging information, communications, and biological technologies are providing new opportunities for farmers and consumers, while climate change is imposing new constraints on agricultural practices, rural livelihoods, and the resilience of agroecological systems. New demographic concerns are emerging with the continuing HIV/AIDS pandemic, changing age structures in some developing countries, rapid urbanization and rural flight, and growing regional and global migration.
The tools needed to address these evolving realities have changed during the last five decades, but the essentials remain unchanged—increasing the production of, access to, and quality of food to end hunger and feed millions. All of the lessons learned here must be applied and adapted for the future, but with a greater sense of urgency and commitment.