By: Laurie Greene; California Ag Today Editor
Last week, Dr. Sanjaya Rajaram, a wheat breeder, was awarded The World Food Prize among an international audience at the Iowa State Capitol in Des Moines. Rajaram has spent his life developing more than 480 varieties of the staple crop and has significantly contributed to an increase in world wheat production.
“This award honors the resilience and innovative spirit of farmers in the developing world and the national agricultural systems,” Dr. Rajaram said. “Without their contributions my research would not have been possible. The mission was – and the mission remains – to serve them.”
The World Food Prize is the foremost international award; recognizing — without regard to race, religion, nationality, or political beliefs — the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.
The Prize recognizes contributions in any field involved in the world food supply — food and agriculture science and technology, manufacturing, marketing, nutrition, economics, poverty alleviation, political leadership and the social sciences.
The World Food Prize emphasizes the importance of a nutritious and sustainable food supply for all people. By honoring those who have worked successfully toward this goal, The Prize calls attention to what has been done to improve global food security and to what can be accomplished in the future.