PUBLIC interest in imbalance between food production and needs in the developing nations has fluctuated widely over the past several years as transitory, near-crisis food situations have developed and then subsided. Today, we consider the report of the President's Science Advisory Committee Panel on the World Food Supply at a time when most recent crop reports from the critical areas are favorable.' Undoubtedly, some will find the topic less compelling now than at earlier times. The original charge to the panel came at a time when the atmosphere of crisis was very real. Failure of the monsoon in India had created a dangerous food situation. Madame Gandhi was on an urgent mission to Washington to speed resumption of U.S. food shipments, which had been interrupted following the 1965 India-Pakistan conflict. In this sense, the charge to the panel was as much a product of the weather over the Indian subcontinent as it was a recognition of any unfavorable change in longterm trends of factors affecting food balances. The panel was directed to consider (1) development of practical synthetic dietary supplements, (2) improvement of the nutritional value of food crops, and (3) the application of technology to increase food production. In other words, the panel was simply to consider ways of producing more and better conventional and nonconventional food.

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