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From being a net food importer in the 1960s, India has emerged as a net food exporter to the world. Provide reasons. | UPSC 2023 General Studies Paper 1 Mains PYQ


From being a net food importer in the 1960s, India has emerged as a net food exporter to the world. Provide reasons.

(UPSC 2023 General Studies Paper 1 (Main) Exam, Answer in 150 words)


In the 1960s, India was dependent on the USA's wheat, which was of substandard quality. USA intentionally delayed in export of Wheat and Cereals products to India during India Pakistan War of 1965. Today, India is one of the largest exporters of high-quality food grains in the world.

India's transformation from a net food importer in the 1960s to a net food exporter is attributed to many factors, some reasons are as follows:

Green Revolution:

The introduction of high-yielding varieties of crops, advanced irrigation techniques, and the use of fertilizers and pesticides in the 1960s led to a significant boost in agricultural productivity and output.

Irrigation Infrastructure:

Investments in irrigation infrastructure, such as the construction of dams and canals, have reduced the dependency on monsoon rains and enabled agriculture more resilient to weather variations.

Technological Advancement:

Adoption of modern agricultural technologies including machinery, high seed quality, and efficient irrigation techniques, has played a crucial role in increasing crop yields and overall agricultural efficiency. 

Government Support:

Proactive government support including agricultural subsidies, minimum support price, and investment in rural infrastructure, has encouraged farmers to adopt modern practices and enhance agricultural productivity.

Nationalization of Banks enables farmers to get easy farm loans. 

Market Reforms:

Economic liberalization and market reforms have facilitated better integration of Indian agriculture into global markets. This has enabled farmers to export their produce and benefit from international trade.

In Summary, India has emerged as a net food export to the world because of the Green Revolution, irrigation infrastructure, mechanization of agriculture, market reforms, and government support. Despite these positive developments, challenges such as water scarcity, climate change, and the need for sustainable agricultural practices persist. Continuing investment in research, technology, and infrastructure is needed to retain India's position as a net food exporter.

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