The Union Minister of Science & Technology addressed the joint India-UK meet on “Sustaining Food Production under Environmental Stress” and called for collaboration between the two nations on issues of mutual concern like achieving the goals of Food Security and Zero Hunger.
Call for Global Collaborations in Various Fields:
India and the UK must invite global collaborations in various dimensions of science like agriculture, medicine, food, pharma, engineering or defence.
India-UK joint collaboration may include programmes like student exchange, basic research, technology development, product development as well as product/process demonstration and their implementation in joint collaboration.
Issue of Shrinking Arable Land:
Dwelling on the issue of Sustainable Food Production, the South Asian region is facing the shrinking arable land, besides the problem of Global Climate Change that needs to be addressed.
Arable land in South Asia was reported at 43.18% in 2018 which has been stagnant since the early 1970s and recently declining.
Growth yields and more intensive use of land will account for all of the growth in crop production and will also compensate for losses in the arable land area.
Improving Quality of Nutritional Foods:
NABI (National Agri-Food Biotechnology Institute) could provide an impetus to the nations need for addressing nutritional security even under the climatic changes happening around the world.
NABI is a premier institute that works at the interface of Agri-Food and Nutrition Biotechnology.
Joint Funding to Address the Challenges:
Underlining that the global pattern of food production and distribution may need to shift significantly as climate change progresses.
Need of joint funding to develop a coherent and stakeholder-relevant R&D (Research and Development) program that will address this challenge.