Several recent studies highlight the “Green Revolution’s” long-term benefits. They argue for sustained investment in the development and usage of high-yielding staple crop varieties. This has been touted as a solution to food shortages in developing countries.
The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the global food system’s vulnerability to attacks. It has brought a realization of the need to alter our food systems to increase their resilience in the face of future threats. We now know that it is possible to develop more resilient crops while promoting healthy eating habits. Improved cereal crops like wheat, rice, and maize will play a crucial role. Contrary to popular opinion at the time, cereals are essential to fixing regional food issues.
A delay in the program could have resulted in a GDP per capita loss in developing countries. A corresponding slowdown in population growth increased the related effects. Researchers discovered a trend by observing the results at all levels; country, regional and global. They also employed an ideal strategy where they found that when rural families’ living conditions improved, the communities decided to have fewer children because they wanted to spend more on them.
The authors point out that it takes a bit of time from the moment of intervention to when actual health effects can be seen in a population. While the current high-yielding varieties were developed in the 1960s, their acceptance did not pick up until the late 1980s. Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa indicates that variety adoption grew by as much in the 2000s as it did in the four prior decades.
Furthermore, any food security strategy aiming to feed 9 billion people by 2050 should include broader system transformation solutions. Some of these include things like improved land conservation and zero-emission agriculture. This includes boosting productivity levels on existing agricultural land while also having positive environmental consequences. While increased productivity is researchers’ main aim, they must ensure that they only employ environmental-friendly strategies for posterity.
Shared innovation and research efforts will bridge yield gaps, open access to better market and nutrition opportunities, and build climate-resilient farming systems. This will lead to increased yields while conserving the environment.