Profitable Opportunities for Food Security (PROOFS)

Over recent years, considerable progress has been made in improving food and nutrition security and health situation with better water and sanitation in Bangladesh. Bangladeshi people face ongoing challenges due to a number of interrelated factors, such as a very high population density, severe climate imbalances and environmental issues, and a high frequency of natural disasters.

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In Bangladesh malnutrition is widespread, especially amongst women and children (40-50%). It affects both their physical health and cognitive development. In addition, it has a negative impact on their social and economic development. Prices of critical imports and global commodities, such as diesel fuel and key staples like rice, remain high and continue to rise.
Rates of malnutrition in children, adolescents, and women in Bangladesh are among the highest in the world. Among these population groups 9.6% are suffering from stunting, 31.9% from wasting anemia and 42% are underweight. Despite the steady decline in malnutrition over the past decade, there is much scope for improving the nutrition and food security of Bangladeshi households. Around 26% of the Bangladeshi population faces chronic food insecurity as a consequence of poor access to sufficiently nutritious food. Higher food security coupled with improved nutrition knowledge can have a significant impact on the physical and cognitive development, which in turn affects the social and economic productivity of an individual.

Insufficient access to food
Food insecurity is closely related to poverty. As much as 32% of the Bangladeshi population lives below the poverty line, with approximately 50 million Bangladeshis experiencing insufficient access to food and other basic needs. The current situation with regard to water, sanitation and hygiene is poor and poses further health risks.

The bulk of food is produced by smallholder farmers, of which many produce only at a subsistence level. Generally, these smallholders face deficient local input and output markets: inefficient market infrastructure and limited market information, poor access to credit and extension services, and inadequate infrastructure such as irrigation and electricity.

ICCO Cooperation, iDE and BoPInc have developed the PROOFS project with financial support of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. PROOFS stands for Profitable Opportunities for Food Security.
Profitable Opportunities for Food Security (PROOFS)


Posted on September 23, 2017

Nutrition Breakout Session during PROOFS BMCM Day 2

Nutrition Breakout Session during PROOFS BMCM Day 2

Nutrition Breakout Session during PROOFS BMCM Day 2
Lot more Discussion on PROOFS Extension Activities and future strategy........!!
Posted on September 20, 2017

Bi Monthly Coordination Meeting

Bi Monthly Coordination Meeting

Bi Monthly Coordination Meeting
The Bi Monthly Coordination Meeting of PROOFS is held at Rigs Inn, Gulshan-1, Dhaka from 19-20 September 2017. All the staffs of this project have attended in the meeting. At first Tessa Schmelzer, Project Manager welcomed the participants and shared the update about project and feedback of Embassy of the Kingdom about next phase of the project. The major discussion points are- - End of Project assessment report sharing - New strategies for extension period (November'17 to October'18)
Posted on March 15, 2017

Regional Coordination Meeting-RCM

Regional Coordination Meeting-RCM

Regional Coordination Meeting-RCM
A day long meeting was held at PROOFS North regional office in Rangpur. All the staffs of north region were participated. The main objective of the RCM was to update about the progress of last two months (January-February'17), sharing lesson learned, challenges and special events which address to achieve the project goal.

PROOFS - Organizing Farmers, Improving Markets

Organizing Farmers, Improving Markets - PROOFS Baseline Film from RedOrange on Vimeo.

Target group

The project targets to reach 80,000 households at the base of the pyramid located in Northern (Gaibandha, Kurigram, Nilphamari, Rangpur) and Southern (Barisal, Bhola, Patuakhali) regions of Bangladesh.


PROOFS employs a market development approach and facilitates the private sector to engage with poor smallholder farmers. PROOFS does not act as a direct service provider but rather helps to build the supporting functions (such as skills, introduction of technology, and access to information) that are required to strengthen the market system. The central idea of this approach is that the poor are dependent on market systems for their livelihoods. Changing market systems to work in a more effective and sustainable manner for the poor may improve their livelihoods, followed by poverty reduction and an improvement in living standards.

Goals overview

- Food Security & Sustainable Consumption (Output)
- Food Security & Sustainable Consumption (Other)

In 2015, PROOFS started scouting for local women who were willing and able to become a micro-entrepreneur. Shima Begum showed interest in serving and ensuring nutritious food and hygiene products for her community. 

“Today, my business continues to grow and I am able to bring home a healthy income to meet the needs of my family.”

Shima Begum is a Nutrition Sales Agent (NSA) in rural Bangladesh. She delivers nutritious food and hygiene products to BoP households, along with behavioral change messages. She has taken up the challenging task of raising awareness on nutritious food and hygiene practices through door-to-door visits and group sessions. Very few adolescents, pregnant and lactating women in Shima’s community have access to nutrition food and hygiene products and follow appropriate practices. Shima plays a major role in her locality to ensure nutrition food and hygiene products and drive behavioral change towards more diverse diets.

The whole story of Shima Bergum as Nutrition Sales Agent

The ones helping out with this project

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