Global agriculture’s challenge to feed two billion more people by 2050 on Planet Earth would have made a sensational episode of the 1960s-1970s hit drama television series Mission Impossible.

Agricultural technology innovations could have been the ultimate mission for lead actor Jim Phelps (Peter Graves) who amazingly accomplished a myriad of seemingly impossible missions.

Agriculture faces a daunting task to feed and clothe a world population expected to reach 9 billion people by 2050. The current population is about 7.1 billion people. Over the last decade, the global population increased by 12 percent.

To fill 2 billion more mouths, worldwide agricultural productivity must increase by 70 percent to 100 percent, according to the United Nations. Making the challenge even more…challenging…. is that agriculture will have to produce more food with less land and water.

DuPont Crop Protection President Rik Miller says global agriculture is up to the challenge. Technological innovations will lead agriculture to achieve significant yield increases.

DuPont is a farm chemical company, but also involved in nutrition, transportation, safety and protection, apparel, home and construction, plus electronics and communications. About 40 percent of its business is in agriculture.

“I believe agriculture is on the cusp of a critical era,” said Miller, a keynote speaker at the 7th annual Southwest Ag Summit held in Yuma, Ariz., this spring. The event was attended by about 600 growers, pest control advisers, and other industry members.

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Miller says feeding and clothing 9 billion people will require major technological breakthroughs and the collaboration of people and organizations worldwide.

“The growing demand for food can only be met by unprecedented technical and agronomic knowledge sharing across the globe,” the DuPont leader said.