Agriculture and Human Values 24 (3):343-353 (2007)

Using a case study from the Kolli Hills, India, I suggest that political ecology provides a useful theoretical basis for considering localized dietary transitions in rural, agricultural communities in developing countries. By examining the reasons for the near-disappearance of local minor millets as staple foods in three small-farmer communities, I argue that an explicit, actor-oriented analysis allows for an integration of food issues with considerations of environmental circumstances, local aspirations, and labor concerns. That is, an agricultural shift that abandons minor millets as a food resource reflects environmental changes and household economic aspirations. Such an analysis has implications for the creation of practical food security projects through the recognition and incorporation of small-farmer experiences, voices, and priorities. This research was undertaken through ethnographic fieldwork, using semi-structured interviews and participant observation as the primary methods
Keywords Agricultural transitions  Dietary transitions  Political ecology  Rural India
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DOI 10.1007/s10460-007-9070-4
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