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Dr. Joseph S. Tulchin
Professor Stefan Hedlund
After harboring visions of becoming an economic and energy superpower, Russia now wants agriculture to fuel its rise. In recent years, its production of grains, especially wheat, has rocketed. But absorbing the increase, whether through domestic consumption or through exports, poses some big challenges. And even if it overcomes those, Russia’s agriculture sector is likely to remain dependent on unprocessed products.
“genetically modified organisms,” or GMOs, are frequently the subject of
controversy, mostly because they are misunderstood. Humans have been
genetically modifying plants and animals for millennia. Now, new gene-editing
methods hold the potential to cure horrible diseases and make food more
nutritious, potentially improving millions of lives. Regulation is holding back
some advances though – but the new approaches are more predictable and precise
than their predecessors.
India’s food output has nearly quadrupled over the past 50 years, but farm households – more than half the country’s population – are in some ways worse off. Rural distress is weighing on the country’s politics and eroding the government’s political base. If India wants to follow the path of the Asian tigers, it should start where they did: agricultural reform.
Barun S. Mitra