Problem of malnutrition among children in India is well documented. Malnutrition levels are especially high in India’s poorest and most heavily populated states. The data indicates that one out of every three children in India is born underweight, while one out of every two children, 47 per cent of children under five in India are either under-nourished or mal-nourished. This is despite having such large programs like ICDS and Mid-Day meal schemes in the country. There is an urgent need to look into the reasons for their ineffectiveness.
Malnutrition is often confused with starvation. Even children of well-off families may suffer from malnutrition. Some of the latest thinking talks of mass fortification of food as one solution. Several countries have opted for the mass fortification technique. Chile decided to fortify its staple flour with iron. The Chinese simply took soya sauce and added iron to it. Thailand developed certain grains of rice through biotechnology which have a high incidence of micro-nutrients in them. Even in India fortification of salt with iodine has been experimented with. Some development sector organizations in some regions of Rajasthan tried fortification of flour with iron. Perhaps malnutrition requires innovative approach with commitment that has been taken to eradicate polio.