Norman Ernest Borlaug


Norman Ernest Borlaug
(1914)



American agricultural scientist, plant pathologist, and winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1970. He was one of those who laid the groundwork of the so-called Green Revolution, the agricultural technological advance that promised to alleviate world hunger.
He studied plant biology and forestry at the University of Minnesota and earned a Ph.D. in plant pathology there in 1941. From 1944 to 1960 he served as research scientist at the Rockefeller Foundation's Cooperative Mexican Agricultural Program in Mexico. At a research station at Campo Atizapan he developed strains of grain that dramatically increased crop yields. Wheat production in Mexico multiplied threefold in the time that he worked with the Mexican government; "dwarf" wheat imported in the mid-1960s was responsible for a 60 percent increase in harvests in Pakistan and India. He also created a wheat-rye hybrid known as triticale. The increased yields resulting from Borlaug's new strains enabled many developing countries to become agriculturally self-sufficient.

Borlaug served as director of the Inter-American Food Crop Program (1960-63) and as director of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, Mexico City, from 1964 to 1979. In constant demand as a consultant, Borlaug has served on numerous committees and advisory panels on agriculture, population control, and renewable resources.



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