Food versus/and fuel

The production of biofuels from agriculture to replace fossil fuels was originally widely applauded, but concerns over the displacement of food production, doubts about carbon savings, and dismay over deforestation land use have now changed public opinion, and in July the UK government announced a reduction in its biofuel targets. Has the picture been over simplified, and misinformed by powerful interests, including those who don’t want to lose their lucrative market share in liquid fuels? Malcolm Shepherd is Managing Director of Biofuel Matters Ltd, a company that provides specialist consultancy services on biofuel issues, and he has spoken widely on his investigations into the issues and facts surrounding the “food versus fuel” debate. He will seek to give an insight into the current complex situation, suggesting that if properly produced, the use of food crops for biofuels can actually improve food security, stabilise food prices and reduce poverty. (BBC radio programme “Our food, our future” 28th July)