Abstract for: Nutritional Dilemma: Why Don’t We Produce As Much Sorghum As We Desire to Consume? What Can We Do About That?

The importance of dietary diversity for ensuring adequate and balanced nutrition is well established. India, the focus of this research, contains 23.4% of the world’s malnourished people including a high proportion of its children (38%) that are malnourished. Contributing to this problem is the steady decline of the production and consumption of those crops that have been traditionally important to the food and feed security, such as Sorghum and Millets. The resulting impact of such a decline on human health is grave. The reasons for such a decline in the production and consumption of nutritious crops are puzzling and the policy interventions to arrest it fragmented. On the supply side, in semi arid tropics (SAT) of India Sorghum has traditionally provided both subsistence to farmers and insurance against climatic variability. Why then is it being replaced by commercial crops? On the demand side, despite the growing awareness about the importance of nutri-cereals among the health-conscious urban residents, why is their aspirational demand for them not manifesting into real demand? In this research investigates: What factors explain the persisting disconnect between the aspirational demand for sorghum and its production/supply?