India s growing malnutrition could be ameliorated by approving biotech crops and pesticides

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In a New York Times article Saturday, journalist Vikas Bajaj highlights the food struggle in rural India, where many people are confronted by the problems of malnutrition and soaring food prices. Four decades after the Green Revolution, which was fueled by the late Nobel Peace Prize laureate and founding ACSH trustee Dr. Norman Borlaug, seemed to have reversed India’s food problems, nearly half of Indian children aged five or younger are still malnourished today.

Though Bajaj notes that India lacks the kind of agribusiness that is present here in the U.S., he fails to mention that the banning of biotech crops in India may be contributing to their agricultural woes.

“In addition, the increased use of modern pesticides would help this ailing country dramatically increase its crop yields, which is exactly what we saw happen in America between 1950 and 1980, when pesticide use increased,” says ACSH's Dr. Gilbert Ross. “The current situation in India is simply a tragedy, and I can’t understand why Bajaj decided not to focus on the real solutions to the problem.”