HYDERABAD:The widespread rural poverty and malnutrition can be eradicated only by the home-grown food grains as farming is the backbone of livelihood in rural India, V Praveen Rao, registrar of Prof Jayashankar Telangana State Agricultural University, has said.
Delivering a talk on ‘Social Protection and Agriculture: Breaking the Cycle of Rural Poverty’ on the occasion of the foundation day and World Food Day at National Institute of Nutrition here on Friday, Rao said, “We need to grow crops based on our strengths. Food security with home-grown food grains can alone eradicate rural poverty and malnutrition since farming is the backbone of rural India. Let us reduce our carbon footprint by buying local products.”
He said it was better to avoid products which consume more water. “Drinking one litre of bottled water is equal to 5 litres of water. To produce 1 kg of meat more than 5,000 litres of water is required. Buying local products is the key. Choose tap water to drink more often and eat unprocessed food.”
Talking about this year’s World Food Day theme, Rao said, “WFD has chosen this particular theme to highlight the importance of reducing rural poverty and granting access to food or the means to buy food. Access to social protection helps people manage social and economic risks and environmental threats they are exposed to. Social protection boosts family income and food security by providing income or food transfers. It helps children stay in school by ensuring basic family incomes so that children need not work to fill the gap.”
Through direct income support to the most vulnerable households, social protection helps reduce extreme poverty and overcome food insecurity, he added.
“Droughts are going to be common in future and climate changes could effect the amounts of food produced, variety and nutritional value of food, and the cost of the food. It will be better if we can grow crops which consume less water and import others.”
Rao said that food security, nutritional security and social protection should be considered as one instead of viewing them differently.
“Food security, nutritional security and social protection go hand in hand. It is also very important to make sure that every individual has social or financial protection,” the PJTSAU registrar said.