FAO in Viet Nam

Academia as a key player for promoting nutrition-sensitive food systems


Hanoi, Viet Nam. Eliminating malnutrition in all its forms is imperative to breaking the intergenerational cycle of poverty and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.

FAO has been investing in developing local capacities in Viet Nam on many fronts, with the ultimate goal of promoting  healthy diets  through sustainable food systems.

In partnership with FAO, the Vietnam National University of Agriculture (VNUA)  piloted a curriculum development process to integrate nutrition into academic curricula and build students’ skills on nutrition-sensitive food systems and value chains. Understanding the importance of food systems for healthy diets and providing students with specific skills and competencies is crucial to the transformation of local food systems.

On 27-28 April, 2021, VNUA convened a workshop whose purpose was presenting the results of the curriculum enhancement process and collecting feedback from those who have been involved, as a starting point for further improvements. The workshops’ participants included FAO, VNUA’s core project team, students who have been involved in the piloting process, as well as Vietnam’s National Institute of Nutrition-Ministry of Health, as well as partner universities such as the Thai Nguyen University of Agriculture and Forestry and Can Tho University. Participants engaged in discussing opportunities for institutionalizing the enhanced courses and extending them to other academic institutions, but also in collecting lessons learnt and identifying further opportunities for applying nutrition-sensitive food systems approaches.

The workshop and the curriculum development process took place under FAO’s project Strengthening capacities for nutrition -sensitive food systems through a multistakeholder approach  —funded by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) of Japan and being implemented in Viet Nam, Ghana and Kenya.