UN World Food Programme

'The man who fed the world'

 Norman Borlaug, the father of the green revolution, a Nobel Peace Prize winner and a man who saved lives of millions of people, died on September 12, at the age of 95.

He was our 'great champion in the battle against hunger' said WFP Executive Director Josette Sheeran.

Norman Borlaug won the 1970 Nobel Peace Prize for launching the green revolution which more than doubled world food production from the 1960s to the 1990s with Asia, Africa and Latin America benefiting in particular.

The Green revolution transformed agriculture through high-yield crop varieties and other innovations and helped saved  millions of lives. Norman was hailed by Time magazine in 1999 as one of the 100 most influential minds of 20th century.

Norman Borlaug was born March 25, 1914, on a farm near Cresco, Iowa and was educated trough the eight grade in one-room schoolhouse. He studied forestry and plant pathology at University of Minnesota. In the 1940s, Borlaug began conducting research in Mexico and developed new disease resistance high-yield varieties of wheat. By combining wheat varieties with new mechanized agricultural technologies, Mexico started producing more wheat than was needed by its own citizens, leading to its becoming an exporter of wheat by the 1960s.

Borlaug's success came just as experts warned that mass starvation was inevitable as the world's population boomed.In the 1960s Borlaug started expanding his project to teach local farmers in Pakistan and India..... and the results were amazing. In the 1980s, the success of the green revolution spilled over to China which became the world's biggest food producer. Borlaug remained active well into his 90s, campaigning for the use of biotechnology to fight hunger.

Norman Borlaug will be remembered as a great man who dedicated his life to fighting hunger worldwide. 

We say goodbye to Norman Borlaug with one of his favorite quotes: 'Reach for the stars.Although you will never touch them, if you reach hard enough, you will find that you get a little 'star dust' on you in the process'.