Home gardens are key to better lives for vulnerable tribes in India

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Battle against Hunger

In 2020, 828 million people globally went hungry and almost 3.1 billion people could not afford a healthy diet, according to World Health Organisation (WHO) statistics.

Despite India now being a middle-income country, it continues to struggle with food security, malnutrition, and rising levels of anemia among women and children.

In recent years, there have been a growing number of studies about how home gardens — which, as the name suggests, are fruits, vegetables, or grains grown at a household scale — might help fight hunger, but there has been limited field evidence of their effects on food security, dietary quality, and incomes.

In a new paper, “Home gardens, household nutrition and income in rural farm households in Odisha, India” published in the Journal of Agricultural Economics, researchers from the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT looked at about 1,900 households in tribal communities in the state of Odisha, India and produced solid evidence that home gardens can improve food security, dietary quality, and income in these rural farming communities.

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