Flourishing amidst ecological pressures : insights from the experience of the Solegas of Karnataka, India

Seshadri, Shreelata Rao and B., Dhanya and Patil, Sheetal and Vanjari, Raghvendra S. (2021) Flourishing amidst ecological pressures : insights from the experience of the Solegas of Karnataka, India. In: Multidimensional approaches to impacts of changing environment on human health. CRC Press. ISBN 9780367558499

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Abstract

Globally, food systems have become increasingly fragile. Environmental and social changes as well as farming practices have largely contributed to this transformation. Health and nutritional outcomes have felt the effect of this transformation most acutely. Traditional food systems, which have ensured food and nutritional security of communities for millennia, have experienced a foundational shift. Based on local agroecological factors, traditional food systems shaped dietary preferences, provided diverse nutritional inputs and contributed significantly to both human and environmental health. Various structural and policy initiatives have changed both the social and environmental context, thus changing dietary preferences as well as the conditions under which food is produced and exchanged. The Solegas, a tribal community, in Southern India, have been living for centuries amidst the forests of the Western Ghats. They largely practiced shifting cultivation, growing millet, legumes, fruit and vegetables. They also gathered honey and berries from the forest and hunted occasionally. Over the years, however, a lot has changed around the Solegas, including the extent and composition of forests, livelihood choices and farming and food practices. Government and other development schemes have transformed their traditional food systems, exacerbating their nutritional vulnerability. Based on an extensive review of the literature, this chapter traces the trajectory, drivers and outcomes of changes in Solegas’ relationship with forest ecosystems. The chapter further develops a conceptual framework that brings together the interdependencies between forests, farming and food and their contribution to flourishing of the community. It ends by identifying meaningful interventions to ensure food systems that optimize environmental and health outcomes.

Item Type: Book Section
Authors: Seshadri, Shreelata Rao and B., Dhanya and Patil, Sheetal and Vanjari, Raghvendra S.
Document Language:
Language
English
Uncontrolled Keywords: Solegas, Ecosystems, Health and nutrition, Western Ghats,
Subjects: Natural Sciences > Life sciences; biology > Ecology
Divisions: Azim Premji University > School of Development
Azim Premji University > Research Centre > Centre for Urban Ecological Sustainability
Full Text Status: None
URI: http://publications.azimpremjifoundation.org/id/eprint/2801
Publisher URL: https://www.taylorfrancis.com/chapters/edit/10.120...

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