71 per cent of Indians cannot afford a healthy diet – says CSE’s State of India’s Environment 2022: In Figuresreport

Report wasreleased online yesterday by SunitaNarain to mark the approaching World Environment Day 

Access the proceedings of the online release webinar click here:   

New Delhi, June 3, 2022: More than 1.7 million Indians die every year due to diseases that can be attributed to dietary risk factors and weight levels, says the State of India’s Environment 2022: In Figures, the statistical compendium published every year by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) and Down To Earth magazine. The e-report was released online yesterday to mark the approaching World Environment Day. 

The report lists these diseases as respiratory ailments, diabetes, cancer, strokes and coronary heart disease.By dietary composition, it refers to diets low in fruits, vegetables, wholegrains, and diets high in processedmeat, red meat, and sugary drinks; the weight levels it talks about refer to whether an individual is underweight, overweight or obese. 

The report points out that 42 per cent of the world’s population cannot afford a healthy diet – the figure is a huge 71 per cent for India. It suggests that the diet of an average Indian does not contain enough fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts and whole grains. 

Food systems and practices exert an impact on environment. According to the report,while milk production is responsible for the lion's share of greenhouse gas emissions and land use, grains account for the biggest share of freshwater use, nitrogen and phosphorous applications. 

The report also presents an analysis of food prices. It says that the consumer food price index (CFPI) inflationhas seen a 327 per cent increase in the past year, while the consumer price index (CPI) – whichincludes CFPI -- has seen an 84 per cent jump. 

Says Richard Mahapatra, managing editor, Down To Earth: “Food seems to be the biggest mover of CPI inflation. The current high levels of food inflation have been driven by therising cost of production, surging international crop prices and extreme weather-related disruptions. In fact, our analysis of CRISIL data shows that food prices haveincreased at a higher rate in ruralareas than in urban areas in March-April 2022.” 

Says the report:“Despite some progress, diets are not getting healthier.Additionally, they are making increasing demands on theenvironment, even as unacceptable levels of malnutrition persist in the country. The high human, environmentaland economic costs of continuing our current trajectory are so significant that we will pay a farhigher price if we fail to act. The global food system falls far short of achieving global goals forboth health and the environment.” 

Adds Mahapatra: “Data re-generates debates and discussions. The State of India’s Environment 2022: In Figures reiteratesthis every year. It brings to you the state of India’s environment, quantified. This year marks a milestone both for India and the planet. India is celebrating its 75th year of Independence and we have a promiseof a ‘New India’ with quantified development goals to meet. This year also marks the 50th anniversary ofthe Stockholm conference, the UN’s first meeting on human environment. This report tries to do justice to both: by making an assessment of whether the promised ‘New India’ will come to pass (in the case of the former). And by documenting and analysing (in the case of the latter) how the planet’s environment has been in the last 50 years.”  

We will bring you more press releases on the report every day till June 5, World Environment Day. If you do not receive them in your mailboxes, do keep checking our website, www.cseindia.org 

To access the press release on the launch of the report

The e-report is available on sale click here

For more details, interviews etc, please contact Sukanya Nair of The CSE Media Resource Centre for the Global South: sukanya.nair@cseindia.org, 8816818864. Journalists can write to Sukanyato get complimentary e-copies of the report.



Data card SOE in figure
Koshy Cherail State Of India’s Environment 2022: In Figures
India’s environment through numbers
By: Rajit Sengupta
Associate editor
Down to Earth
India’s environment through numbers
By: Kiran Pandey
Programme Director,
Environment Resource Unit