Grey Revolution

4 minute read
Grey Revolution

India’s history owes its development to the various revolutions it has witnessed. Among the various important agricultural revolutions of India, the Grey Revolution is related to the production of wool as well as the increase and growth in the use of fertilizers. The grey revolution had been implied since the green revolution. While the green revolution is known as making history by contributing to the country’s development, the grey revolution focuses on a promising future. Read this blog to know about what Grey Revolution is associated with, when it started and how it contributed to India’s agricultural sector. 

What is Grey Revolution Associated with?

Grey Revolution started in the 1960s to 1970s in India. Noticing the grey among the greenery, the grey revolution has its roots laid during the agricultural revolution of India. After India was successful in increasing the higher-yielding varieties of seeds, the grey revolution focused on the use of fertilizer to boost the growth. The aftermath of the green revolution had certain drawbacks and the grey revolution helped rectify the faults. The grey revolution also added the production of wool for increasing agricultural profit. 


The main objectives of the grey revolution were to overcome the drawbacks of the green revolutions which were:

  • The rice productivity growth rate in Punjab during 1965-74 was 9% but dropped to 1.13% during 1995-96 which was a major drawback.
  • There was a considerable decline in the area under pulses.
  • Summer rice cultivation excessively increased water and energy demands.
  • The occurrence of diseases, pests, and weeds had increased. This caused a significant downfall in biodiversity.
  • The concentration of aero-solution concentration in urban areas had increased.
  • The overexploitation of groundwater resulted in an increase in the costs of pumping water, thus decreasing profitability.
  • A major cause of the green revolution was a decrease in sanitation and cleanliness.


To overcome the drawbacks mentioned, the following strategies are applied in the process of the grey revolution. However, it is important to note that these strategies are currently being practised and introduced and the process is on-going:

  • To have a diversification of livestock, horticulture, aquaculture, pulses, and oilseeds.
  • This revolution bridged yield gaps and accelerated productivity and growth.
  • This revolution also lays emphasis on Climate Smart Agriculture implementation.
  • The use of genetic engineering is used along with biotechnology. 
  • The integrated approach of Biosecurity was implemented which includes analysis of the risk factors for food safety.
  • The inclusion of Social policy and protection by the UNICEF works on the children’s rights in India.
  • The National Food Security Act, 2013 (Right to Food Act) was implemented. It aims to provide subsidized food grains to approximately two-thirds of India’s 1.2 billion population.
  • Farmers were provided with Education through the farmer field school approach.  Facilities for farmers to access to modern technology and professional management in the farming sector should be implemented. 
  • Implementation of impact evaluation in the agricultural field which included impact assessment and impact monitoring.

Challenges Faced

Despite using these strategies, there are still major challenges that are being faced when it comes to farmers and their needs. Farmers are in a pitiful state in our country. There still needs other major strategies that can be implemented in the future. The following are the challenges faced while implementation of the strategies of this revolution in India:

  • The main challenge faced was the sustainable intensification of production to meet the global demands for food quantity and quality.
  • The professional approach to agriculture to increase the profitability and social attractiveness of this field was another challenge faced.
  • Ecosystem Services was also a challenge that improved water quality, soil health, carbon capture, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat.
  • It was difficult to predict the differentiation of future demands, food, and agriculture systems, and match them.

After reading all the given information on grey revolution, if you still want to know more about its impact over the years, then you must read The Grey Revolution by Ahmad Al-Khatat (Author), Rana Abbas (Photographer).

UPSC Quiz on Grey Revolution

Now that you know all about this important agricultural revolution, here are some important questions on Grey Revolution:

I. When was Grey revolution started in India?

  1. 1970s
  2. 1950s
  3. 1960s
  4. 1940s

II. What is Grey revolution?

  1. An agricultural revolution for increasing fertiliser production
  2. An agricultural revolution for increasing coal production
  3. An Indian freedom movement
  4. A revolution during the time of depression

III. Which industry is related to Grey revolution?

  1. Fertilisers
  2. Poultry
  3. Coal
  4. Oil and Gas

IV. Grey Revolution is associated with _______.

  1. Agriculture
  2. Fertilisers
  3. Cattle Breeding
  4. Milk Production

V. Grey Revolution is related to another agricultural revolution called ______.

  1. Golden Revolution
  2. Green Revolution
  3. Black Revolution
  4. Blue Revolution


  • I: 1
  • II: 3
  • III: 1
  • IV: 2
  • V: 2

Important Agricultural Revolutions of India

Here are the most important agricultural revolutions of India you must learn for UPSC and other competitive exams:

Revolution Related to Father
Golden Revolution Horticulture and Honey Production Nirpakh Tutej
Green Revolution Agricultural Production especially Food Grains Monkombu Sambasivan Swaminathan
Grey Revolution Fertilizer Production
Silver Revolution Egg and Poultry Production Indira Gandhi
Black Revolution Petroleum
Brown Revolution Cocoa Production/Leather Production & other non-conventional products
Blue Revolution Fish Production Dr. Hiralal Chaudhuri and Dr. Arun Krishnan
Red Revolution Meat Production/Tomato Production Vishal Tewari
Pink Revolution Meat and Poultry Production/Medicine Durgesh Patel
White Revolution Milk and Dairy Production Verghese Kurien

The grey revolution has on-going outcomes and is mainly associated with increased fertilizers and wool production! Want to pursue a career in Agriculture? If you are looking for a course in agriculture and can’t find a suitable option, our experts at Leverage Edu can assist you in exploring the best course and university combinations and find the right one that suits your interests and preferences! Sign up for a free session with us!

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