Green Revolution and GMO's

By: Neena Perdue

Causes and Results of the Bengal Famine in 1943

There were multiple causes of the 1943 Bengal Famine. One being that there was an acute shortfall in food production in the area. But the more prominent cause of the Bengal Famine was the result of hysteria related to World War II. Food supply was not a main priority for British rulers at the time. In addition, Indian traders hoarded food in order to sell at higher prices. As a result, four million people died of hunger during the famine. On a positive note, the Green Revolution was a established as a result from the Bengal Famine.

3 Elements of Green Revolution in India

  • Continued the expansion of farming areas.
  • Double-cropped existing farmland.
  • Used seeds with improved genetics.

Positive Outcomes of the Green Revolution in India

One, the Green Revolution resulted in a gain output of 131 million tons in 1978-79. This resulted in India becoming one of the world's largest agricultural producers. Out of all the other countries in the world that attempted the methods of the Green Revolution, India was by far the most successful. Two, India became an exporter of food grains. This brought India more income which improved it's economy.

Limitations of Green Revolution in India

  1. Today, India occasionally falls short of demand.
  2. The Green Revolution was not able to make India permanently self-sufficient in food.
  3. India has failed to extend the concept of high-yield value seeds to all crops or all regions. India remains confined to food grains only, when all kinds of agriculture should be produced. In addition, only Punjab and Haryana (states in India) have shown substantial results of the Green Revolution.
  4. Some starvation cases and famine like conditions have been reported even today in cities such as Kalahandi in Orissa. These conditions and suffering went on for many years and not even the Green Revolution could help.
India has many human health risks such as malnutrition and low quality of diet. Environmentally, India suffers from harmful pesticides and as a high amount of water use.

GMO's: Pro's and Con's

Pro's:


  • Reduced need for herbicides
  • Reduced need of pesticides
  • Reduced greenhouse emissions as GMOs require less tillage or plowing, thus less use of fossil fuels
  • Ability to manipulate foods to increase desirable components such as nutrients
  • Increased production of food for starving third world countries.

Con's:


  • GMOs do not increase yields, and work against feeding a hungry world.
  • Genetic engineering creates dangerous side effects.\
  • GMOs increase herbicide use.
  • GMOs contaminate―forever.
  • GMOs are unhealthy.