India Sets New Wheat Production Record
Contrary to what Paul Ehrlich predicted, India now produces 10 times more wheat today than 1965 when population was 65 percent smaller.
Before Norman Borlaug showed up in the 1960s, India was only producing 10 million tons of wheat a year. This year it expects to produce 112 million tons. Thanks to Borlaug and other scientists and innovators, wheat production has increased by 1,020 percent. From 1965 to 2022 India’s population increased by 180 percent from 500 million to 1.45 billion. Every one percent increase in population corresponded to a 5.66 percent increase in wheat production. The opposite of what Paul Ehrlich and Thanos predicted. While Ehrlich wanted to sterilize India, Borlaug taught them how to feed themselves and export their surplus production. The lesson learned is to not trust someone, who is frightened of the future because of their hypothetical model, with totalitarian power to deprive people of their human rights and dignity.
In 1970 Borlaug was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. His discoveries are estimated to have saved a billion people from malnutrition and starvation.
His favorite saying was “No time to relax.”
If people are free to innovate and enjoy the benefits of their labor, they will lift themselves and everyone else out of poverty.
Who is our next Norman Borlaug? Maybe someone born in India who now has the food and time and cell phone to discover valuable new knowledge.
You can learn more about these economic facts and ideas in our new book, Superabundance, available at Amazon. Jordan Peterson calls it a “profoundly optimistic book.”
Gale Pooley is a Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute and a board member at Human Progress.