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Agriculture scientists explain reasons behind threat to food security

Agri scientists and experts have pointed out that heavy migration from rural to urban areas, ever-increasing population, and conversion of agriculture land into residential colonies are posing threat to food security.

Addressing a seminar in connection with World Food Day, which was arranged by the Faculty of Food, Nutrition and Home Sciences, of University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Vice Chancellor Dr Muhammad Iqbal Zafar said that rural development, provision of modern facilities at rural areas, and to make agriculture sector a profitable business will help addressing the issue of heavy migration. He said that heavy migration from rural areas to cities was not only increasing burden on urban settlements but also causing a negative impact on agriculture sector.

He said that that malnutrition is the area of the grave concern that as being abundant in the food, the country 50 percent was malnourished. He said that there is a need to create the awareness about balanced usage of food. He said that simplicity in the food habits would help improving the situation. He said that junk food has become common in people, which is not good for health.

He said there were 244 million international migrants in 2015 across the world. It means 40 percent more than in 2000. He said people who move within national borders were estimated at 763 million in 2013.

Dean Faculty of Food, Nutrition and Home Sciences Dr Masood Sadiq Butt said 50 percent of women and children are malnourished. Malnourished in Pakistan leads to stunted growth 43 percent and underweight 31 percent under the children aged five year old. He said that deficiencies are of iron (32.7 percent), Vitamin (30 percent), and zinc (40 percent). Country was nutrient deficient country. We are having the enough food but the affordability was the main issue. He also said that the food diversity was essential for mitigating the issue of malnutrition, he said. He told that the UAF has kicked off a BS programme in Human Nutrition and Dietetics to produce the skilled manpower.

Abbasi, Khalid. Agriculture scientists explain reasons behind threat to food security. Business Recorder, October 17, 2017.

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