3. Food security is a much broader concept than only the access and availability of food. Comment. Do you think the current government measures address the issue of food security in a broader sense of the definition. (15 Marks)
खाद्य सुरक्षा केवल भोजन की पहुंच और उपलब्धता से कहीं अधिक व्यापक अवधारणा है। टिप्पणी करें। क्या आपको लगता है कि मौजूदा सरकार के उपाय परिभाषा के व्यापक अर्थों के सापेक्ष खाद्य सुरक्षा के मुद्दे को संबोधित करते हैं?
Candidates need to comment on how the food security is a much broader concept than only the access and availability of food. Also give your thoughts on how far the current government measures address the issue of food security in a broader sense of the definition.
Every year over 10 million people die of hunger and hunger related diseases. Nearly six million of these are children under the age of five; that is one child’s death approximately every six seconds. Understanding how this still occurs amid the ever-increasing social enlightenment of the 21st century—and under the auspices of a vigilant global developmental community—is one of the key challenges of our time.
Food security is a much broader concept than only the access and availability of
- The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations suggests, that food security is the product of food availability, food access, stability of supplies and biological utilisation.
- Considering the dimension of availability; food is provided through one of two means—domestic production and/or imports. This requires thought and consideration to be given to the physical availability of food at farms and in local markets.
- Food access entails ensuring people have adequate access, both physical and economic to food through growing it; purchasing it; being gifted it; bartering or trading for it etc.
- Food security is a much broader concept than only the access and availability of food. It also includes stability of supplies and biological utilisation.
- When talking of stability, although not a new idea, the realisation that food security can be lost as well as gained is of increasing concern within the food security debate. As a result, the notion of risk management is gaining much credibility as a tool in the fight against hunger.
- Consumed food must have a positive nutritional impact on people. It entails cooking, storage and hygiene practices, individuals’ health, water and sanitations, feeding and sharing practices within the household.
- The notion of biological utilisation is simply the ability of a person to optimally or at least effectively, absorb the food they eat. In turn research has shown that this ability is closely related to a person’s health status which, in turn is also predicated on important non-food inputs.
The current government measures to address the issue of food security includes:
- The government has created an electronic national agriculture market (eNAM) to connect all regulated wholesale produce markets through a pan-India trading portal.
- The introduction of mid-day meals at schools is a Centrally-Sponsored Scheme which covers all school children studying in Classes I-VIII of Government, Government-Aided Schools.
- Integrated Schemes on Oilseeds, Pulses, Palm oil and Maize (ISOPOM).
- Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana.
- Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY).
- National Food Security Mission.
- With such measures, the current government measures do address the issue of food security in a broader sense of the definition to a certain extent.
Understanding and promoting food security is as much about coming to grips with its nemesis—food insecurity. India needs to adopt a policy that brings together diverse issues such as inequality, food diversity, indigenous rights and environmental justice to ensure sustainable food security.