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Monday, April 6, 2009

The Green Revolution

Green Revolution usually refers to the transformation of agriculture that began in 1945. One significant factor came at the request of the Mexican government to establish an agricultural research station to develop more varieties of wheat that could be used to feed the rapidly growing population of the country. In 1943, Mexico imported half its wheat, but by 1956, the Green Revolution had made Mexico self-sufficient; by 1964, Mexico exported half a million tons of wheat. The associated transformation has continued as the result of programs of agricultural research, extension, and infrastructural development, instigated and largely funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, along with the Ford Foundation and other major agencies.

Many agronomists state that the Green Revolution has allowed food production to keep pace with worldwide population growth while others state that it caused the great population increases seen today. The Green Revolution has had major social and ecological impacts, making it a popular topic of study among sociologists.

The term "Green Revolution" was first used in 1968 by former USAID director William Gaud, who noted the spread of the new technologies and said, "These and other developments in the field of agriculture contain the makings of a new revolution. It is not a violent Red Revolution like that of the Soviets, nor is it a White Revolution like that of the Shah of Iran. I call it the Green Revolution."

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