Home gardens key to improved nutritional well-being

"Promotion of home gardens for improved nutritional well-being"

L. Bhattacharjee, S. Phithayaphone and B.K. Nandi
in collaboration with the
Project Team

Department of Agriculture
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
Lao People's Democratic Republic

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific
Bangkok, 2006

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All rights reserved. Reproduction and dissemination of material in this information product for educational or other non-commercial purposes are authorized without any prior written permission from the copyright holders provided the source is fully acknowledged. Reproduction of material in this information product for resale or other commercial purposes is prohibited without written permission of the copyright holders. Applications for such permission, with a statement of the purpose and extent of the reproduction, should be addressed to Senior Food and Nutrition Officer, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, 39 Phra Atit Road, Bangkok 10200, Thailand.

© FAO 2006

For copies write to:
Biplab K. Nandi
Senior Food and Nutrition Officer
FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific
39 Phra Atit Road, Bangkok 10200, Thailand
Tel: (+66-2) 697 4143 or 697 4265
Fax: (+66-2) 697 4445 or 697 4405
E-mail: Biplab.Nandi@fao.org


FAO recognizes that healthy, well-nourished people are both the outcome of successful social and economic development and constitute an essential input to the development process. Achieving nutrition related goals requires that national and sectoral development policies and programmes are complemented by effective community-based action aimed at improving household food security and promoting the year-round consumption of nutritionally adequate diets. These activities are being actively pursued by FAO as part of its field programme. This report provides an account of one such pilot project in the Lao People's Democratic Republic. The objective was to promote integrated home gardening, including small livestock and aquaculture. The project activities targeted poor and food-insecure families with under-five-year-old children with moderate or severe undernourishment. Post-project evaluations found increased production of vegetables, fruits, poultry and fish among the targeted households and a decline in the rates of undernutrition in children under five years of age. The project demonstrates an effective and sustainable method for improving nutritional standards of low income rural families through integrated household food production, which can be extended to the national level.