Introduction: Once Bangladesh had golden days. Her granaries were full of crops. But those happy days have become a legend now. The food problem nowadays becomes acute in Bangladesh. Bangladesh has avoided a recurrence of famine since 1974, but this does not imply that there has been improvement in the underlying trend of persistent hunger.
Statistics: When hunger is as pervasive and as persistently so as in Bangladesh, the food problem ceases to be just one aspect of the economic problem. It becomes indistinguishable from the totality of the development problem itself.
It has been reported by FAO that out of the ten children eight remain unfed in Bangladesh. The total quantity of food grown in a year is far less than the demand for food. So, grow more food is actually the solution to the food problem.
Causes of the problem: Bangladesh is a small country but it has a large number of growing populations. The small amount of our land cannot even produce enough crops to meet the bare necessities of the people. Our cultivators cannot till manured and watered their lands scientifically. So, they produce less quantity of the crop. Besides floods, cyclones, drought, and insects often destroy our crops.
The loss of crops owing to natural calamities is a recurring occurrence in Bangladesh. Every year, a huge amount of crops are damaged by floods, cyclones, droughts, excessive rainfall, etc.
Every year Bangladesh is losing about 80 thousand hectares of its cultivable land because of housing, setting up industries, schools, constructing roads, and other infrastructural development. This is also contributing to the shortage of food supply in our country.
There are some dishonest people who store food grains with a view to making huge profits. This causes a sharp decrease in the supply of food in the market and consequently causes a food crisis. Besides these, fragmentation of cultivable land, lack of irrigation facilities, poverty, etc. are also responsible for the food crisis in Bangladesh.
The artificial crises: We have already mentioned the starving children. Now baby food which is the common name of powdered milk is imported for the children. But because of some dishonest, greedy, merchants most of the tins are hoarded just after the shipment reaches in Bangladesh. These merchants wait until there is a crisis and then they sell goods at a higher price.
Solutions: In order to solve the food problem of our country we will have to make the fullest use of our land. Our farmers should be educated in cultivating scientifically. They ought to use better seeds and manure in the lands. Agricultural Development Corporation should supply them with enough loans. The cooperative farming system should be introduced. The irrigation system should be modernized and fallow lands are to be brought under cultivation. Pest control measures should be adopted. Necessary steps are to be taken to prevent floods. When everything is effectively done we will be able to get double or more production of food.
The government should emphasize the increase of production of food by applying scientific agricultural methods. Proper steps should be taken to control population explosion. Cultivators should be provided with loans on easy terms. Long-term plans and preventive measures should be introduced to reduce the damages by natural disasters. Any syndicate activities to store food grains should be suppressed boldly.
Conclusion: The food problem is really a great challenge to our existence. At present we are to spend a great amount of foreign exchange for procuring food from foreign countries. So, we must try our best to grow as much food as we need.
Today not only Bangladesh but also the whole world is suffering from food problems. To attain food sufficiency, co-ordinate and pragmatic effort is necessary. We all should work together to make the ‘Grow More food’