Reducing malnutrition in India
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Reducing malnutrition in India

March 9, 2020


PRABHU PINGALI: I spend
most of my time working on food and agriculture
problems in developing countries with a particular
emphasis on India. So one of the things that my
own personal experience watching the Green Revolution
happened in my village was to see the importance
of technology, and policies, and how that creates change. My main goal is
to eventually see dramatic reductions in
malnutrition in India and looking at food-based
pathways to getting there. And if you think about
food-based pathways, you’re also addressing
rural poverty, because improved
production of better food is a significant
income-generating pathway for the poor. So you’re addressing both
malnutrition and poverty with the same strategy. Something the US
can learn from India is how do you make
better food choices? Especially as you look at this
trend towards a flexitarian diet, then there’s a
lot that Indian diets can contribute to that. As you think about these new
sources of food, such as Beyond Meat, et cetera, they depend
on these alternate sources of protein. And some of the
issues around how do you supply these
sources of protein? How do you supply beans,
and peas, and lentils that go into the manufacture
of these Beyond Meat type products? You find that there’s
a lot of lessons that we’ve learned from
agriculture development in other parts of the
world that continue to be relevant to India. There are lessons that
we’ve learned in India that are relevant outside of India. And this is where I
think an institute like ours makes a difference. We can become the
conduit for learnings from other parts of the world
and bring them to India. And we can be the conduit
for taking lessons from India to other parts of the world. That’s what’s so exciting
about being in my seat.

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