Webstreaming : you can watch a live recording of this Briefing here.
The Brussels Development Briefing n.41 on the subject of “Improving nutrition through accountability, ownership and partnerships” was held in Brussels from 09h00-13h00 (proceeded by lunch 13h00-14h00) on 20th May 2015 at the ACP Secretariat (451 Avenue Georges Henri, 1200 Brussels, Room C).
Malnutrition affects one in two people on the planet. Of these, 162 million children under the age of five are estimated to be stunted (i.e. low height for age). Two billion people are estimated to be deficient in one or more micronutrients. Nearly 1.5 billion people are estimated to be overweight and over 500 million to be obese. These conditions all have severe consequences for survival, for morbidity, and for the ability of individuals, the economy and society to thrive. In relation to the scale that these problems imply, the allocation of public resources to their prevention and amelioration is minuscule. Resources to specific nutrition programmes amount to a small fraction of one per cent of domestic or aid budgets.
Undernutrition in early life can have devastating and life-long consequences for physical growth as well as cognitive and social development. Undernutrition remains one of the major challenges in low-income countries. The consequences of undernutrition in early childhood are especially devastating and can lead to lifelong physical and mental impairments. In May 2012, health leaders worldwide adopted the Maternal, Infant and Young Child Nutrition Plan at the 65th World Health Assembly (WHA). This includes committing to reduce the number of stunted children in the world by 40 per cent by 2025. Under existing assumptions, projections from the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF show that the world is not on track to meet any of the six WHA nutrition targets. Globally, little progress is being made in decreasing rates for anemia, low birth weight, wasting in children under age five, and overweight in children under age five. Progress in increasing exclusive breastfeeding rates has been similarly lackluster. More progress has been made in reducing stunting rates in children under five, but not enough to meet the global target under current projections.
Malnutrition is either directly or indirectly responsible for approximately half of all deaths worldwide.Poor nutrition and calorie deficiencies cause nearly one in three people to die prematurely or have disabilities (WHO). Each year about 10.9 million children younger than age five in developing countries die, and 60 percent of these deaths result from malnutrition and hunger-related diseases (WFP 2010). Moreover, millions of people suffer from serious vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Hunger and malnutrition have effects that last throughout the life cycle, with poorly nourished children growing up to be less healthy and productive than they could be. Girls who do not get the nutrition they need become undernourished women who then give birth to the next generation of undernourished children.
Introductory remarks: Viwanou Gnassounou, Assistant Secretary General – Sustainable Economic Development and Trade of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) [Video] ; Jean-Pierre Halkin, Head of Unit, Rural Development, Food & Nutrition Security, European Commission/Europaid [Video]; John McDermott, Director IFPRI-Led CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health (A4NH) [Video] ; Michael Hailu, Director, CTA [Video] and Isolina Boto, Manager, CTA Brussels [Video]
Panel 1: Enhancing nutrition: a multi-sectoral approach
This panel will review the key challenges and opportunities for enhanced nutrition of relevance to the agricultural sector in ACP countries and the lessons learned from research and practice. [Video]
-Overview of undernutrition & malnutrition: what do we know, what have we learned?
– Initiatives at international level: The Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN)
Tom Arnold, Interim SUN Movement Coordinator a.i., Ireland [Video]
-Support partner countries in attaining their nutrition goals: the National Information Platforms for Nutrition Initiative
-Key findings of the global nutrition report: improved accountability and ownership
-The role of CSOs in support of nutrition: field experience
Panel 2: Best practices in addressing nutrition challenges
This panel will look at examples and drivers of successes in nutrition programmes at national level. It will also highlight successes in sustainable partnerships and PPPs and the key role of the private sector. [Video]
-Successes in country leadership and ownership in addressing nutrition challenges
– Successes in PPPs and the role of the private sector in support of nutrition
Fokko Wientjes, Vice-President Corporate Sustainability & Public Private Partnerships, DSM [Video]
– Drivers of success in biortification: the case of Iron-biofortified beans in Rwanda
–Examples of nutrition support through community participation and action
-Best practices in measuring impact of agriculture on nutrition
Conclusion – Michael Hailu, Director, CTA [Video]