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40 CHANCES by Howard G. Buffett


Finding Hope in a Hungry World

by Howard G. Buffett with Howard W. Buffett

Pub Date: Oct. 22nd, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-4516-8786-6
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Farmer and philanthropist Buffett (Threatened Kingdom: The Story of the Mountain Gorilla, 2005, etc.) examines how to improve the world's food supply and make it more secure.

The author—a U.N. World Food Program Ambassador—has committed the foundation his better-known father, Warren, helped him establish to putting his knowledge and experience to work in the particular circumstances of countries in Africa, Asia, and South and Central America. The author’s earlier travels on behalf of wildlife conservancy—supporting mountain gorilla and cheetah survival—and his studies on the impact of conflict and war undergird his foundation's focus on the protection of the global food supply. With tireless enthusiasm, Buffett has worked to recruit educators to upgrade methods in the countries he has visited, and he introduces many here. He sees an important role for America in the maintenance of worldwide agricultural productivity, but it depends on accumulated improvements in skills, physical and cultural infrastructure, and technology and cannot simply be exported to areas lacking the culture, infrastructure or soil quality. The author discusses how he searches out the expertise required to consistently, successfully address specific problems of growing food crops with the tools and seeds available on local soils. This effort is very much in the tradition of Norman Borlaug and the Green Revolution of the 1960s and ’70s. Buffett believes that improvements in seed stocks and soil management and technology upgrades are absolutely necessary, as are people qualified to impart the required knowledge and skills. The author’s commitment to education, and action, on behalf of such capacities, shines through his book.

An impressive example of how an individual’s diligent work can truly affect the world.