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Throughout the developing world, farmers are expanding areas of cultivation in an endless quest for fertile soil.According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, if current trends hold, by 2050 the world's arable land will increase by some 70 million hectares, and much of the new farmland will be on areas that are currently forested.As soil health declines and output drops, many farmers see no option but to look for new land to cultivate.Over the last 25 years, farmers in more than 20 countries around the world improved food security while maintaining or increasing forest cover.According to one study, between 1965 and 2004, farmers in developing countries who planted high-quality seeds were able to reduce farmland by almost 30 million hectares – an area roughly the size of Italy.Around the world, billions of dollars are invested annually to address environmental degradation and poverty; many of the 17 U.N. Sustainable Development Goals are linked in some way to these two concerns.
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