A few hours from now, the U.S. Census Bureau's world population clock rolls over to 6.9 billion. And by the end of 2012, we'll have added nearly another population of Japan to the total as we cross the 7 billion mark. To feed everyone on our final push to 9 billion humans, we're going to need every trick in the book. We're going to need new genetically modified strains of wheat, maize and rice that can thrive on lower petrochemical pesticide/fertilizer input, that can grow in harsher terrain with more volatile climate conditions, less water, poorer soil. We're also going to have to start recycling biomass on national scales - reclaiming phospates and so on from our garbage stream and sewage. Urban communities will have to give up more and more of our wasteful water habits to free up more water for agricultural uses. This will be one of the greatest challenges of the next 50 years - conserving water for agriculture in the face of increasing urban demand. Regular meals of red meat will go back to being a luxury item for the world's middle classes as livestock operations decrease to divert production back into grains for direct human consumption. In any case, the era of cheap food and easy low quality calories is over. Even unhealthy, processed foods will keep getting more expensive. Ultimately, that will spell the end of the obesity epidemic in the industrialized world. America's poor and middle class will be priced out of the market for excess body fat.