Despite rapid economic growth in the past two decades, India is unlikely to meet the first Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of cutting the proportion of hungry people by half. Per capita availability, as well as consumption of food grains, in India has declined since 1996; the percentage of underweight children has remained stagnant between 1998 and 2006; and the calorie consumption of the bottom half of the population has been consistently declining since 1987. In short, all indicators point to the hard fact that endemic hunger continues to afflict a large proportion of not only general Indian population but also the farming community due to the mono-cropping and promotion of cash crops.
In this context, Chetna Organics has identified food and nutrition security as the cross cutting theme to support resource poor farmers (most of whom are tribal) of the rainfed regions, and sees a close connection between food and nutritional security to the livelihood security of the farming household. Chetna Organics would develop programs on crop diversification, promoting backyard vegetable and horticulture gardens, school gardens and grain banks to achieve food and nutritional security for the small holder growers.