Conference Proceeding

Food and Nutrition Security: Root and Tuber Crops may play major role under stressful environment!

Dr. Jayanata Tarafdar

Food security is necessary for every individual, home, community and nation. The growing population, increasing rate of persistent hunger and accelerating climate change are the major concern of world food systems and is the big challenge for meeting the food needs worldwide. Root and tuber crops e.g. sweet potato, yams, taro, cassava, swamptaro, tannia are major staple foods and a critical component of the global food system. Root and tuber crops have proved to be the one of the best mean of diversification in horticultural crops for higher productivity, nutrition security and income generation in the developing world. ICAR- AICRP on Tuber crops takes concrete efforts for documentation, characterization and utilization of the genetic resources of major root and tuber crops. Among aroids Elephant Foot yam (EFY) taro are the important starchy cash crop suitable for fragile environment and dry land areas. Swamptaro is an excellent alternative crop for utilization of low, submerged fallow lands and source of income. Swamptaro can play an important role for income generation and management of low lying areas. We contribute specialized knowledge, experience and organize training to underpin the farmers’ forum and promote these crops in across this country. ICAR-AICRP Tuber Crops, Kalyani centre, West Bengal is giving continuous efforts for participatory evaluation and selection of varieties with desired characteristics for promoting sweet potato to address nutrition security. India is the potential sweet potato growing country and is rich in diversity in its genetic stocks with valued agronomic and other desirable traits. Many elite sweetpotato cultivars are being maintained in the field gene bank of the Coordinated Research Centres and being evaluated. Elephant Foot Yam (EFY) is grown all over India in diversified soil and climatic conditions and this crop is gaining popularity for meeting food security under sustainable agricultural system and also in changing climatic condition. Besides EFY is highly remunerative crop and a handful of high yielding, non-acrid, smooth corm varieties have been developed under All India Coordinating project of Tuber Crops. In adaptive research activities, taro, Elephant Foot Yam, Diascoria and orange, yellow fleshed sweet potatos proved in order to access their suitability to different environments with high yield potential and nutritive values in most of the farm community in the state West Bengal and other states in India. Orange sweet potato could play unique role for mitigating vitamin A deficiency in poor and pro-poor communities. A multifaceted and linked global strategy is needed to ensure sustainable food and nutrition security where root and tuber crops could be explored.

Published: 08 November 2017


Copyright: © 2017 Dr. Jayanata Tarafdar. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.