Thank you so much for your regular support to this project. We are writing this letter to share the trends of Food Security in Rajasthan. Seva Mandir has undertaken a study on Food and Nutrition Security in Udaipur, Rajasthan. The final analysis is under process but the trends from the study reveals a dismal state of affairs. A brief literature review correlated with the analysis is given below:
The issue of Food and Nutrition Security is by and large a multifaceted one. Localized as well as external factors such as, changing economic and fiscal policy of the state, status of access to loans and other agricultural input, uncertain rainfall etc. effect the status at the household level.
Survival in a delicate ecosystem characterized by dryland areas and uncertain rainfalls is the major struggle for the poor farmers in Rajasthan. However, in recent years, their survival strategies have come under severe strain due to external interventions and demographic factors wherein the sustainability of the ecosystem has been driven to the margin. Almost 45 per cent land holdings size less than 2 hectares do not have irrigation facilities.
An issue of concern with agriculture is the declining area of production of cereal crops like bajra and small millets (considered to be more nutritious) compared to wheat. There is also decline in production of pulse as per research carried out in various parts of the state. These factors directly affect the dietary diversity of the target population and hence a declined nutritional status.
The increasing human pressure on the fragile eco-systems, absence of adequate investments and appropriate management to supplement and conserve land and water resources, population growth, macroeconomic policies that provide inducement to over-exploit the natural resource are factors that contribute to explain the environmental factors that will influence the food security of the state in the long run.
At an aggregate level the state has achieved “self-sufficiency” in food production in a normal year. But these normal years are very few and in-between. The same cannot be said of security at the household level for more than half the population of the rural areas, which survives on its own meager production and incomes from casual farm and non-farm employment.
Looking at the given trends, it is very important for us to ensure food security in our region. Many thanks for your regular support and giving us a strength to address this issue in our area.
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