Geographical approaches to micronutrient deficiencies in Himalaya
MetadataShow full item record
- Geografi i Bergen 
Research carried out under the NUFU (Norwegian Committee for Development Research and Education) programme has shown that micronutrient deficiencies in Himalayan soils are widespread, and also that there are links from the plant-soil system and agricultural productivity to livestock nutrition and human nutrition. The most important micronutrient deficiency to plants is boron, whereas zinc deficiency is a serious problem to both plant production and human nutrition in large areas in Himalaya. Deficiencies of selenium, iodine and molybdenum are also recognised in several regions. The explanations are complex, and the causal links from ’soil-tohealth’ are complicated by farming systems, socio-economic and cultural factors. However, the chains of explanation are plausible, and the main purpose of the paper is to demonstrate how models and methods commonly applied by geographers can contribute to micronutrient research. Analysis of spatial distribution of nutrient concentrations in soils provides insights in landscape processes. Adding a farming systems approach adds causal factors connected to markets, economy and labour. Analyses of the interface between local and scientific knowledge leads to institutional analysis questions, where quality control of agricultural inputs and international trade is at stake. Metalevel discussions of the Green Revolution show how HYV crops lead to ’empty calories’.
PublisherUniversity of Bergen. Department of Geography
SeriesGeografi i Bergen