Hunger statistics are going in the wrong direction: now 815 million people are going to bed hungry, up from 777 million in 2015. Too many people are being left behind from the benefits of improved nutrition.
The new 2017 Global Nutrition Report stresses the world cannot afford not to act on nutrition: it’s a critical lynchpin for the global effort to end poverty and achieve sustainable development.
The independent Global Nutrition Report is developed by a high-level stakeholder group comprising of members of governments, donor organizations, civil society, multilateral organizations and the business sector.
Priorities for transformative change
The report stresses the importance of the SDG adagium to ‘leave no one behind’, which means focusing on inequalities in countries and between them, to ensure that everyone is included in progress, and everyone is counted.
Secondly, there is a strong call to stop tackling problems in isolation to address malnutrition in an effective and sustainable way. Action throughout the SDGs is needed to address the causes of malnutrition, and, in turn, action on nutrition can have a powerful multiplier effect across the SDGs.
Integrated approach for nutrition
ICCO Cooperation embraces the priorities given in the report and considers it as an inspiring source to our work. Improving nutrition among infants, adolescent girls and women forms part of ICCO’s agenda for inclusive and sustainable development.
Based on a long track record and presence in the South we combine efforts with public and private actors to promote availability, access and utilization of divers and safe food throughout the lifecycle. We build our strategies on applied research and systematization providing evidence for scaling, replication and lobby & advocacy.
In Bangladesh e.g. ICCO introduced the ‘Nutrition Sales Agent’ program (film), aimed at contributing to improved nutrition and hygiene services among small-scale farmer households. 320 women are trained as agents. They visit rural households from door to door, to promote and sell packages containing nutrition and hygiene products. The packages are developed in collaboration with private companies, thus helping to expand market solutions for food and nutrition security, as well as WASH services. Other countries where ICCO supports nutrition improvement programs are Bolivia, Colombia, Kenya, Ethiopia and Myanmar.
Nutrition data revolution
The report highlights that data gaps are hindering accountability and progress. It is stated that to improve nutrition universally, better, more regular, detailed and disaggregated data are needed. National averages are not enough to see who is being left behind, as nutritional levels can vary even within households. Beyond just collecting data, it should be used actively to make better choices and inform and advocate decision-making from household all the way up to to policy level.
As of 2008 ICCO is collecting food and nutrition related data, using internationally recommended indicators to generate insights on for example household level food security (HFIAS) and minimum dietary diversity intake for women of reproductive age and infants. The data are collected, analysed and used to raise awareness, build dialogues, partnerships, intervention strategies, accountability and monitor progress.
Go to the Global Nutrition Report 2016