I have often been intrigued by various viewpoints and research based findings published by many organizations including many respectable global corporate czars or even public institutions. Most try and project a perspective depicting how technology is probably going to shape our future, and focus in depth on the constructive and disruptive power of technologies.
It is encouraging to see that technology has already been deployed to find solutions to some of the major challenges we face in basic needs. Take the example of water. We have finally acknowledged that the possibility of water becoming scarce is very real. Hence, when at one point in time, irrigation systems in the form of connected canals allowed efficient use of water, we are now moving to more innovative techniques. We have adopted drip irrigation and technologies which allow reuse of water. We are turning to technology for answers, and finding reliable ways to reuse-recycle and purify water.
Even in energy and health solutions, we have leant towards technology for more sustainable solutions. Be it using solar and wind energy to create effective and clean sources of energy, or devising ways to use bio fuels more efficiently. Technology seems to have reliable answers for everything! In health, from organ replacement to DNA gene editing, technology has enabled humans to find medicine to diseases that were considered incurable, and allowed humans to lead a longer and better quality of life.
We have embraced technology in every form, in every field. We have praised it for its immediate, safe and long lasting impact. We took pride in our inventions, which complimented nature and allowed humans to strike a balance. By leveraging technology at the right time, we have been able to avert many crises!
But the reason I am intrigued, is that we often forget to acknowledge and appreciate that we are at a juncture of human civilisation where technology plays a very important role in our basic human need- food. We know the challenges food production is facing in India. Agriculture can fight the challenges thrown up by urbanization, climate change and water shortage only up to a point. Ultimately, the future lies in technology enabled solutions- be it drought resistant seeds, or innovative practices such as growing underground. Automation of farm techniques and precision agriculture hold the key to increased output to provide for the growing population.
Yet, we are being selective in our approach to technology. Negating all the evidence proving that reliance on technology can help us evade a future where malnutrition and food insecurity is rampant. However, I hope that through my blog post, I have been able to provide a perspective on what we are inviting upon ourselves if we do not give technology a fair chance in food as well.