Food consumption, in terms of kcal/person/day, is the key variable used for measuring and evaluating the evolution of the world food situation.1 The world has made significant progress in raising food consumption per person. It increased from an average of 2 360 kcal/person/day in the mid-1960s to 2 800 kcal/person/day currently (Table 2.1). This growth was accompanied by significant structural change. Diets shifted towards more livestock products, vegetable oils, etc. and away from staples such as roots and tubers (Tables 2.7, 2.8). The increase in world average kcal/person/day would have been even higher but for the declines in the transition economies in the 1990s.