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President of Mozambique discusses improving nutrition with vegetables

At a visit to vegetable breeding company, Rijk Zwaan, president Filipe Nyusi of Mozambique today participated in a roundtable discussion on various food and nutrition issues together with the Dutch private sector, NGOs, knowledge institutions and the Dutch government. The gathering was organized jointly by Rijk Zwaan, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“We have to educate our people to diversify their diets,” President Filipe Nyusi said during the meeting. The discussion focused on how the food and beverage industry could collaborate with the government, NGOs, UN and academia to improve the food and nutrition situation in Mozambique, thereby highlighting multi-stakeholder (‘Dutch Diamond’ approach) to working on food and nutrition security.

Undernutrition has major impact on the development and health of the population and nutrition investments have a 1:16 return on investment (Global Nutrition Report 2016). Undernutrition is still a problem in Mozambique but the government is committed to tackling it. The country has, for example, recently approved regulation that requires all large, medium and small commercial scale mills to fortify maize and wheat flour. The decree came into effect in April 2016.

At the roundtable some topics discussed included how compliance with the fortification decree can be increased and how the supply and demand of vegetables can be stimulated. They also discussed how consumption of vegetables can be a sustainable strategy to reduce micronutrient deficiencies.

They also covered the importance of offering local crops and varieties that are suited to the local context. Therefore Rijk Zwaan and the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs participate in projects like the Amsterdam Initiative against Malnutrition (AIM) (that is coordinated and facilitated by GAIN) that brings together stakeholders to improve food and nutrition security.
Participants at the roundtable came from Rijk Zwaan, GAIN, DSM, Wageningen University and Research, Save the Children, SNV, UNICEF and the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

For more information, please contact:
Herbert Smorenburg
Tel: +31 6 270 113 63
Sandra Ederveen
Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Tel: +31 6 52751314

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