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Global: The geopolitics of palm oil and deforestation
2019-07-09
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Like other vegetable and animal fats, palm oil follows food-supply trends that have been well documented since the 18th century. For example, in France the calorie intake per capita peaked around 1900 and has since been stable. 

While the total caloric intake in France has levelled off, the proportion of carbohydrates has constantly decreased while that of fats has risen. The two converged between 1980 and 2000. In other words, once the French society provided enough food for all, the average diet progressively increased its share of fats, up to a maximum. 

Many countries are still far from achieving the same food abundance that countries like France have, but food security increased in the last six decades worldwide, even in the least-developed countries. Since 1950, the FAO has compiled detailed data showing that the same phenomenon occurs everywhere: intake of food and fats per capita increases, and hunger progressively decreases.

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