The Green Revolution Quiz



9 Questions

What was the main objective of the Green Revolution?

Which of the following was NOT a key component of the Green Revolution?

Who was heavily involved in the initial development of the Green Revolution in Mexico?

What was the name of the high-yielding rice variety developed by the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines?

Which country became one of the world's most successful rice producers after adopting IR8 rice?

What was the main reason for the less successful attempts to introduce the Green Revolution concepts into Africa?

What is the name of the new high-yielding 'family' of rice varieties attempting to be introduced in western Africa?

What is the Agricultural Input Subsidy Program in Malawi?

What is the projected increase in food production required to meet the needs of global populations by 2050?


The Green Revolution was a period of technology transfer initiatives that saw greatly increased crop yields and agricultural production beginning in developed countries after World War II and spreading globally until the late 1980s.

The Green Revolution involved the incorporation of new technologies such as high-yielding varieties of cereals, particularly dwarf wheat and rice, and the widespread use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and controlled irrigation.

The Green Revolution also saw the adoption of newer methods of cultivation, including mechanization, and was often implemented as a package of practices meant to replace traditional agricultural technology.

Both the Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation were heavily involved in its initial development in Mexico, with agricultural scientist Norman Borlaug being credited with saving over a billion people from starvation.

Mexico was the recipient of knowledge and technology of the Green Revolution and became a showcase for extending the Green Revolution to other areas of Latin America and beyond, into Africa and Asia.

The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) established in the Philippines in 1960 resulted in IR8 rice, which required the use of fertilizers and pesticides but produced substantially higher yields than the traditional cultivars.

India soon adopted IR8 rice and began its own Green Revolution program of plant breeding, irrigation development, and financing of agrochemicals, which led to India becoming one of the world's most successful rice producers.

China's Green Revolution came from its own fruition, and cannot necessarily be credited to practices popularized by Norman Borlaug, but rather from the government's sponsorship of agricultural research, specifically in producing a high-yielding rice variety for the rapidly growing population.

Brazil's agricultural revolution involved pouring vast quantities of lime on the soil to reduce acidity, resulting in Brazil becoming the world's second biggest soybean exporter and the biggest exporter of beef and poultry.

Attempts to introduce the successful concepts of the Green Revolution into Africa have generally been less successful due to widespread corruption, insecurity, a lack of infrastructure, and a general lack of will on the part of governments.

A recent program in western Africa is attempting to introduce a new high-yielding 'family' of rice varieties known as "New Rice for Africa" (NERICA), which yield about 30% more rice under normal conditions and can double yields with small amounts of fertilizer and very basic irrigation.The Green Revolution: A Summary of Key Facts and Figures

  • The Green Revolution began in the 1940s and aimed to increase agricultural production in developing countries.

  • The use of high-yielding varieties (HYVs), irrigation, pesticides, and synthetic nitrogen fertilizer were key components of the Green Revolution.

  • The Agricultural Input Subsidy Program in Malawi, launched in 2005, has been credited as a "miracle" for producing the largest maize harvest in the country's history and increasing food security.

  • The Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) was established in 1971 to support the Green Revolution and has added many research centers throughout the world.

  • CGIAR has responded to criticisms of Green Revolution methodologies by adopting more holistic approaches to agriculture.

  • The Green Revolution has contributed to widespread poverty reduction and avoided the conversion of thousands of hectares of land into agricultural cultivation.

  • HYVs significantly outperform traditional varieties in the presence of adequate irrigation, pesticides, and fertilizers.

  • By one estimate, the Green Revolution increased yields by 44% between 1965 and 2010.

  • The energy for the Green Revolution was provided by fossil fuels in the form of fertilizers, pesticides, and hydrocarbon-fueled irrigation.

  • The Green Revolution has both increased and decreased food security, with some critics arguing that it has led to monoculture crops and malnutrition.

  • The transition to Green Revolution agriculture led to widespread establishment of rural credit institutions, which has led to debt and loss of farmland for some smallholder farmers.

  • The spread of Green Revolution agriculture reduced agricultural biodiversity but had varying effects on wild biodiversity.The Green Revolution: Impact on Land Use, Health, and the Environment

  • Agricultural expansion has led to land degradation and soil nutrients depletion, resulting in farmers clearing forested areas to maintain production.

  • The Green Revolution has been criticized for limiting the biodiversity of Mexico and relying on a few staple crops, but it has also reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 5.2–7.4 Gt and reduced land used for agriculture.

  • The diffusion of modern crop varieties has reduced infant mortality in developing countries by 2.4–5.3 percentage points and has had a particularly large impact on rural children, boys, and low-caste children.

  • Consumption of pesticides and fertilizer agrochemicals associated with the Green Revolution may have adverse health impacts, such as increased likelihood of cancer and pesticide poisonings.

  • The Evergreen Revolution aims to represent an added ecological dimension to the original concepts and practices of the Green Revolution.

  • The Green Revolution was able to improve agricultural output in some regions, but there is still room for improvement, and the Second Green Revolution will likely focus on improving tolerances to pests and disease and technological input use efficiency.

  • High yield agriculture is highly reliant on agricultural machinery and transport, as well as the production of pesticides and nitrates that all require energy.

  • Nitrogen fertilizer is a direct fossil fuel product processed primarily from natural gas.

  • Essential mineral nutrient phosphorus is often a limiting factor in crop cultivation, while phosphorus mines are rapidly being depleted worldwide.

  • The Greenpeace Research Laboratories found that twenty percent of the sampled wells in Punjab had nitrate levels above WHO limits for drinking water, linked to high use of synthetic nitrogen fertilizers.

  • Norman Borlaug, the father of the Green Revolution, dismissed certain claims of critics but also cautioned that there are no miracles in agricultural production.

  • It is projected that global populations by 2050 will increase by one-third and as such will require a 70% increase in the production of food.


Test your knowledge on the Green Revolution with our quiz! From the development of high-yielding varieties of cereals to the widespread use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, this quiz covers key facts and figures about the agricultural revolution that began in the 1940s. Explore the impact of the Green Revolution on land use, health, and the environment, and learn about the successes and challenges of implementing its practices in developing countries. Whether you're a history buff or interested in sustainable agriculture, this quiz is

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