Diagnostics of Sorghum and Pearl Millet grains-based nutrition in India uri icon


  • About 26% of the Indian population is deficient in caloriesand 28% in protein (Chand et al. 2003). The deficiency ismost acute among the poor. The magnitude of micronutrient(iron (Fe) and zinc (Zn)) deficit is particularly alarmingamong children, women of reproductive age, and pregnantand lactating women (Sharma 2003). Current efforts tocombat micronutrient malnutrition in the developingworld focus on providing vitamin and mineral supplementsto pregnant women and young children, and on fortifyingfoods during processing (Per Pinstrup-Andersen 2000).The introduction of crop varieties selected and/or bredfor increased Fe and Zn will complement these efforts.Micronutrient-rich sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench)and pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.)cultivars are being bred by the International CropsResearch Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT)to address micronutrient deficiency in the semi-arid tropicswith funding support from HarvestPlus. An understandingof the dietary contribution to nutrient intake in majorsorghum and pearl millet production/consumption regionswould help in quantifying the micronutrient deficiencyfor better targeting sorghum and pearl millet cultivars.This paper summarizes the contribution of sorghum andpearl millet toward intake of nutrients in major sorghumand pearl millet growing regions in India

publication date

  • 2006