Preliminary estimate of the agriculture sectors capacity to nourish chilean population: Agronomic aspects

Rafael Novoa S-A1

The maximum population that Chilean agriculture can sustain was evaluated. The estimate was based on the nutritional requirements of an average inhabitant, three different yield levels (present, good, and potential) of crops and animal products needed to satisfy those requirements, and four possible uses of available soils. It was concluded that doubling the present yield levels and, simultaneously, intensifying the land use with crops, it is possible to feed 45 million people. This level will be reached by 2050, if the present rate of population growth is maintained. Wheat and potato production should receive a high priority, to achieve that goal.

1 Estación Experimental La Platina (INlA), Casilla 5427, Santiago, Chile.