Both the rising global population and the effects of climate change will impact on the availability of drinking water. The OECD estimates that globally, 70% of the freshwater withdrawn from natural resources is used in agriculture for food and fibre production. So at a time when we need to intensify agricultural production we need to do this with less water. We therefore need to harvest more food per drop of water. Water protection and water use efficiency must be an integral part of sustainable intensification.
The Water Footprint Network has provided an estimate of the amount of water needed to produce some of our common foodstuffs: