Muhammad Babangida is a committed philanthropist from Nigeria

Tag: Investing

Agricultural Investing and Food Security

On a planet that is sustaining more than seven billion people, producing enough food to feed them all is a major challenge. However, producing enough food is not the primary problem. Rather, it’s the distribution, affordability, and access to all the food that is produced that causes food insecurity for millions.

In fact, more than nine million people a year die from famine, according to Mercy Corps, an international relief agency.

The Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) reports that the number of people facing food insecurity rose by 60 million between 2014 and 2019. The situation is even more confounding considering that, in modernized nations, from 30% to 40% of all food is simply tossed in the trash because it goes unused.

The challenge of achieving even food distribution globally is considerable. Experts say a key area where this problem can be attacked is in the realm of agricultural investment. This process can be handled in multiple ways. One of the biggest factors is the funding provided by governments. The U.S. is the largest contributor to the FAO with $529 million contributed in 2019 alone.

This money is used to support things like crop forecasting, sustainable agriculture, disaster relief (as in the case of famine), food safety, and more. The FAO funds collaborative research efforts between nations seeking to increase food production. More importantly, it works on ways to get food where it is needed and to make it affordable.

Industry observers say that investing in agricultural technology must be a high priority going forward. That’s because there are a series of factors that are putting pressure on growing enough food for everyone. For example, climate change is producing longer periods of drought that destroy crops. That can be countered by technological advances that produce food varieties that can sustain warmer and drier growing conditions.

The central thing to remember about bolstering ag-tech is that it costs money. That’s the role of agricultural investment. Governments, corporations, local farmers, and communities must put more financial resources into creating advanced food-growing technologies that will sustain food production in the coming years.

Additionally, geopolitical factors, social factors, and government policy all play a role in producing food and getting it to the tables of all those who need it around the world.

Investing With Your Children in Mind

It’s instinctive: parents always want the best for their children. And whether it’s the top-of-the-line baby food or a four-year degree in the United States, children are certainly expensive. Don’t be discouraged. There are ways to invest in your child’s future while planning for retirement or paying off the mortgage.

Start Planning Early

When you’ve just returned home from the maternity ward and holding your newborn, planning for an expensive college is probably not the first thing you have in mind. But it helps a lot to start early. This is because of the effect known in the investing world as compounding. Think of it like pushing a snowball up a hill. Every year, not only do you get paid interest on your principal but also any previously accumulated interest. It’s minuscule over a short period but can add to massive amounts of capital over two decades.

Try to set aside a fixed amount every month to dedicate to savings towards your child. This takes the guesswork and stress out of it. By investing every month, you’ll benefit from what is known as dollar-cost averaging. You’ll benefit from market fluctuations because you’ll be purchasing at periods when the stock market is low.

Additionally, many countries have tax-advantaged savings accounts for education. For example, in the United States, this is known as the 529 Plan. This will add a big boost to your savings.

Invest Your Savings

Inflation will eat at your savings. So although a savings account might seem to pay a high rate, in reality, the rate is much lower. You’ll want to invest in the stock market. Find a financial product that suits your risk appetite and time horizon. Alternatively, you could talk to a financial advisor. If so, you might want to go for a fixed fee consultation rather than paying a percentage. You’ll pay less in service fees in the long run.

Save Money

Being thrifty has a bad reputation but it pays off in the end.

Some people like to focus on the big things. For example, a smaller apartment in a less swanky part of town could save you big. A used car is a fraction of the price of the new one.

Others like to focus on expensive daily habits. That daily latte is hurting your wallet (not to mention ballooning your waistline.)

Saving for your child’s future is an intimidating task. It doesn’t have to be if you plan, invest, and be thrifty.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén