Dear Moderator and fellow Contributors, your comments has been very interesting and insightful on the present discussion thus far. We would like to make our contribution to question 1:
1. If you were designing an agriculture investment programme, what are the top 5 things you would do to maximize its impact on nutrition?
In maximizing the impact of nutrition in an agricultural investment programme the following aspects needs to be addressed:
2. To support the design and implementation of this programme, where would you like to see more research done, and why?
Research into new approaches of biofortification is needed in the fight against malnutrition and hunger.
In most developing countries the average diet of the poor usually consists primarily of lesser nutritious foods – staple food crops – such as rice and wheat, cassava and maize/corn. These diets result in micro-nutritional deficiencies of vitamin A, iron and zinc. By undertaking research into the best traditional breeding practices using the latest in modern biotechnology, developing countries can efficiently produce staple food crops with a higher micro-nutritional value which would effectively address some of the nutritional issues of the targeted group(s). Biofortified crops also help to promote food safety since the added trace minerals may prove essential in helping plants resist diseases which would otherwise have been treated with potentially harmful chemicals.
Also, mineral packed seeds have exhibited a higher proportion of survival as well as more rapid initial growth. The culmination of these two effects will translate to higher yields in the selected crops. This essential increase in agricultural productivity can help to promote sustainable agricultural practices aimed at meeting the nutritional objectives of the programme.
In partnership with:
Related links and resources:
Synthesis of Guiding Principles on Agriculture Programming for Nutrition
FSN forum debate “Linking Agriculture, Food Systems, and Nutrition: What’s your perspective?”
FAO Nutrition and Consumer Protection Division