Pulses and a 5 year old named Krishnav - The little beans that could

This blogpost was written by Mayur and Rashi Jain.

The United Nations declared 2016 as the International Year of Pulses. To celebrate on behalf of India, my 5 year old son Krishnav Jain, my wife and I, as responsible parents, decided to initiate the movement to grow pulses in our own backyards.

We can all play an important role in supplementing our nation’s pulses supply by growing pulses in our own gardens. My five year old son Krishnav Jain insisted on asking me why we can’t grow the food that we eat. At first we took his words to be a child's fantasy. But he continued asking good questions about how crops are grown, and his curiosity grew further. It was obvious that he would not be satisfied with only verbal explanations.

We decided to grow Lobia (black eyed beans) and Moong daal (green gram) in our backyard and my son was actively and eagerly involved in the whole process. He also participated in a school play titled ‘Seed that Grew’. It was pleasing to watch him care for the plants, taking care to water them regularly and to have pulses as part of his meals on a daily basis.

Seeing the excitement and passion he has in growing pulses at home, his friends have also joined the Pulses Movement. As the plants grew, Krishnav asked good questions about each part of the plant and what would happen to it next. Along with pulses, we also grew green vegetables - spinach and fenugreek (methi).

Watching a small seed grow into a plant that gives us nutritional benefits was an enriching learning experience for my son and this has been instrumental in making him understand the importance of nutrition. He understood that pulses are a vital source of plant-based proteins. They are also an important source of plant-based protein for animals.

This may only appear to be a symbolic gesture but, considering India’s huge population, if everyone can be motivated to contribute, it will help our nation tremendously.

We take this opportunity to thank United Nations for providing us all the guidance, support and vision to heighten public awareness of the nutritional benefits of pulses as part of sustainable food production aimed towards food security and nutrition.

As a parent we have played our small part, now let’s join our hands together and work towards making INDIA –A Pulses Nation.

The views expressed here belong to the speaker and do not necessarily represent FAO’s views, positions, strategies or opinions.


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