Population and Environment

, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 109–117 | Cite as

Human Carrying Capacity Is Determined by Food Availability

  • Russell Hopfenberg


Simple mathematical models have illustrated the relationship between human carrying capacity and population growth. In this study, food supply is proposed as the variable which best accounts for the human carrying capacity. The logistic equation, using food supply data as a variable carrying capacity, yields population estimates which are in accord with actual population numbers. That food supply data adequately fits the logistic model of human population dynamics provides evidence that, consistent with ecological notions typically applied only to nonhuman species, human population increases are a function of increased food availability.

agriculture ecology growth logistic population 


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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Russell Hopfenberg
    • 1
  1. 1.Duke UniversityUSA

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