Agricultural land displacement and undernourishment

Marselis, S. M., Feng, K., Liu, Y., Teodoro, J. D. & Hubacek, K., 10-Sep-2017, In : Journal of Cleaner Production. 161, p. 619-628 10 p.

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  • Agricultural land displacement and undernourishment

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  • Suzanne Marielle Marselis
  • Kuishuang Feng
  • Yu Liu
  • Jose Daniel Teodoro
  • Klaus Hubacek

Land displacement, which is the use of land in one country for consumption purposes in another country, has increasingly become a global phenomenon with the growth of international food markets, global trade and low transportation costs. Large-scale land acquisitions occur when land is bought or leased by an investing party for export production, sometimes on terms that do not serve local people living off this land. Land acquisitions often occur in developing countries with a large share of undernourishment, possibly impacting local food availability. The goal of this research is to investigate global undernourishment and agricultural land displacement, using multi-regional input-output analysis to quantify the amount of agricultural land used for the production of crops traded between 133 countries and regions. The findings show that undernourished regions are more likely to export more embodied agricultural land, which is land used in the production of agricultural commodities, than they import. On the other hand, regions not suffering from undernourishment generally have higher imports of embodied land. Agricultural land availability per capita is lower in undernourished regions and shows a negative relationship with the share of undernourishment. Land acquisitions are found to take place mainly in countries characterized by undernourishment and net export of embodied agricultural land. This implies that land acquisitions reduce the local agricultural land availability per capita and could potentially affect local food security. Further research is needed to investigate local impacts of land deals on food security and to establish policy implications for governments of vulnerable regions. (C) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)619-628
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Publication statusPublished - 10-Sep-2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Trade, Multi-regional input-output analysis, Land grab, Food security, Poverty, Globalization, INTERNATIONAL-TRADE, FOOD INSECURITY, CLIMATE-CHANGE, CONSUMPTION, HUNGER, WATER, RUSH, ACCOUNTS, DRIVERS, IMPACTS

ID: 79569217