Breeding for Biofortification: Achievements and Importance
Breeding for micronutrient-rich staple food crops utilizing the best traditional breeding practices and modern biotechnological tools is known as biofortification. Hidden hunger is major problem in developing country, it is defined as overall poor quality of nutrition, means individual may eat sufficient number of calories to live, but the basic diet fails to provide adequate amount of crucial vitamins and minerals needed for the mental and physical health. Conventional strategies to overcome malnutrition include dietary supplements and food fortification programmes, these methods are efficient but increases cost per unit input which is the major concern for developing nation. Biofortification is an advance technique by adopting which, concentration of essential minerals and vitamins can be enhanced. Several biofortified variety has been released for commercial cultivation in major food crops, e.g., Wheat, Rice, Maize, Groundnut, Mustard etc. having more zinc and iron content.