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Agriculture 2.Zero Hunger

The Green Revolution in Korea: Development and Dissemination of Tongil-type Rice Varieties

General Background

Korea has 5,000 years of long-standing history, overcoming tremendous invasion by foreign country and trials, created splendid heritage, however, could not free from the shackles of food shortages. Therefore, for Korean to increase the volume of food production was long cherished-wish. Started from the early 1960s, Korea set out National Economic Development Plan KDI. 2012. From miracle to maturity: The growth of the Korean Economy. Harvard Univ. Press. View  which pursues national economy should begin with self-sufficiency in food. Under the strong leadership of president, food self-sufficiency was one of the major challenges of state affairs, so policy to increase food productivity was actively promoted at the government level. As a result of these tireless efforts, Korea could finally achieve 100 % of self-sufficiency in rice which is a main staple in Korea since in the late 1970s. We have achieved the green revolution in Korea by ourselves.

Self-sufficiency in rice has been accomplished with R&D in agricultural sector and new technology transfer system such as increased rice productivity through improved rice varieties and development of cultivation technologies, dissemination new technologies to farmers in a swift manner. All of the factors were harmonized. In addition, these are also possible thanks to firm government policy will and practice on providing rice production infrastructure including facilities, flexible production and supply of rice production materials including fertilizers and chemical pesticides.

In the mid 1970s, there was desperate need to secure investment resources on National Economic Development Plan, the annual per capita income of Korea was 200 dollars to 300 dollars and total export volume was 10 billion dollars, but at this critical juncture, Korea could achieve self-sufficiency in rice. This became a cornerstone to strengthen the basis of national economic development not only for securing food security, boost farm household's income but also for saving foreign currency required to import foreign rice.


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Korean Rice Technical Working Group

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