Review: Feed demand landscape and implications of food-not feed strategy for food security and climate change

Animal. 2018 Aug;12(8):1744-1754. doi: 10.1017/S175173111700324X. Epub 2017 Dec 4.


The food-feed competition is one of the complex challenges, and so are the ongoing climate change, land degradation and water shortage for realizing sustainable food production systems. By 2050 the global demand for animal products is projected to increase by 60% to 70%, and developing countries will have a lion's share in this increase. Currently, ~800 million tonnes of cereals (one-third of total cereal production) are used in animal feed and by 2050 it is projected to be over 1.1 billion tonnes. Most of the increase in feed demand will be in developing countries, which already face many food security challenges. Additional feed required for the projected increased demand of animal products, if met through food grains, will further exacerbate the food insecurity in these countries. Furthermore, globally, the production, processing and transport of feed account for 45% of the greenhouse gas emissions from the livestock sector. This paper presents approaches for addressing these challenges in quest for making livestock sector more sustainable. The use of novel human-inedible feed resources such as insect meals, leaf meals, protein isolates, single cell protein produced using waste streams, protein hydrolysates, spineless cactus, algae, co-products of the biofuel industry, food wastes among others, has enormous prospects. Efficient use of grasslands also offers possibilities for increasing carbon sequestration, land reclamation and livestock productivity. Opportunities also exist for decreasing feed wastages by simple and well proven practices such as use of appropriate troughs, increase in efficiency of harvesting crop residues and their conversion to complete feeds especially in the form of densified feed blocks or pellets, feeding as per the nutrient requirements, among others. Available evidence have been presented to substantiate arguments that: (a) for successful and sustained adoption of a feed technology, participation of the private sector and a sound business plan are required, (b) for sustainability of the livestock production systems, it is also important to consider the consumption of animal products and a case has been presented to assess future needs of animal source foods based on their requirements for healthy living,

Keywords: animal product consumption; climate change; food security; human-inedible; novel feed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animal Feed*
  • Animals
  • Biofuels
  • Climate Change*
  • Food Supply*
  • Humans
  • Livestock


  • Biofuels