A number of global megatrends can mean new opportunities for agribusiness moving forward, according to Chris Nolan with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), who gave the keynote address this week at the 2016 Export Exchange co-sponsored by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) and the U.S. Grains Council.
Nolan identified five global megatrends – demographic shifts, global economic power shifts, accelerating urbanization, resource scarcity, and evolving technology – that provide opportunities for the agricultural industry.
One of the most important megatrends for the audience at Export Exchange is the demographic shifts, which Nolan differentiated from population growth. “The fact is population growth is not a trend but a fact of life,” he said. However, the accelerating growth of the middle class is a trend that means the need for food will increase faster than the overall rate of population growth. “To be in the middle class means you consume more calories and your diet includes protein,” said Nolan. “Feeding the middle class will mean increased protein consumption so investment in the protein value chain will be required.”
And producing more animal protein will mean producing more grains to feed those animals, which means opportunities for increasing exports of U.S. coarse grains and distillers feed from ethanol production.
Listen to Nolan’s presentation here: Chris Nolan, PricewaterhouseCoopers