By Chris Mesiku for Agroforestry News
July 3, 2012
The Times of India reports that eminent agricultural scientist M S Swaminathan advises that three key factors are needed in order to ensure food security.
Firstly that the right agricultural technologies must support traditional wisdom in management of the ecosystem while producing cash crops. It is no longer effective to simply emphasise the green economy. He suggested that the health of the ecosystem must be taken into account when considering food security so that those who are less fortunate can be protected against the impacts of climate change. The report seems to say this is why Dr Swaminathan is also encouraging meaningful investments into agroecological practices as a vital component of food security.
Swaminathan said modern practices like precision farming and climate-resilient farming or ‘smart farming’, would help convert the concept of ‘evergreen agriculture revolution’ into a reality.
Although India is able to produce enough food to feed it population, Dr Swaminathan lamented that malnutrition is still a major issue.
To change this malnutrition dip, Dr swamithan advised that, “It is important to restore confidence in the international trading system through policy options like putting in place the right import and export policies, as well as timely dissemination of information on market fundamentals.”
“We have to think in terms of a targeted PDS (public distribution system) versus a universal PDS. An important issue for the Food Security Act to tackle is whether PDS can be made universal in the 200 high-burden districts identified by the Prime Minister’s Nutrition Advisory Council,” he concluded.