There's a persistent theory out there that science has overcome Malthus's dire warning that population growth will eventually outpace the planet's ability to feed everyone, says Mark Bomford
, director of the Yale Sustainable Food Project
. Maybe two or three times, depending on the source.
Of course, achieving a sustainable food system that feeds humans worldwide isn't that simple, Bomford told attendees of the inaugural Yale Food Systems Symposium
(YFSS), which opened at Kroon Hall on Friday. "To claim this as an unmitigated triumph requires the kind of optimism that perhaps only a statistician can muster," Bomford said. "[And] if a university is true to its mission, that is not actually an ethically defensible way to deal with a complex problem, by ignoring all the nooks and crannies and dark shadows."