Global food shortages, coupled with rocketing demand for food and energy prices, will create a “perfect storm” by 2030, warned the Government’s chief scientific adviser yesterday.

Global demand for food and energy would soar by 50% by 2030 and demand for fresh water jump by 30%, predicted Professor John Beddington in an interview with The Daily Telegraph. The problem was being exacerbated by population increases and climate change, he said.

“It’s a perfect storm,” said Beddington at the sustainability conference in Westminster yesterday. “There’s not going to be a complete collapse but things will start getting really worrying if we don’t tackle these problems.”

Better harvesting procedures and increased disease and pest-resistant crops were required, he said.