Monthly Newsletter
Feed the Future is the U.S. Government's global hunger and food security initiative. For more information, or to subscribe to this publication
please visit
Workers at NUMA Feeds Ltd. in Uganda show off their cereal and animal feed products. With support from Feed the Future, NUMA recently introduced a nutritious new product to the market made with groundnuts and local ingredient mukene. Credit: USADF


We know that nutrition impacts every aspect of human development. From performance in school, to fighting off diseases, to the health, food security and economic growth of nations, good nutrition (especially in the 1,000 days from pregnancy to a child's second birthday) is essential to ensuring people around the world can lead healthy, productive lives and lift themselves out of extreme poverty. While the world has seen a 37 percent drop in stunting since 1990, undernutrition still contributes to nearly half of all child deaths and costs low- and middle-income countries up to eight percent of their economic growth potential.


Building on progress to date and investing in nutrition is central to Feed the Future's strategy in the countries where we work. Across our programs in agricultural research, markets and policy, nutrition is fundamental to achieving our goals. Last year alone, Feed the Future and U.S. Government global health programs reached more than 12.5 million children with nutrition interventions and services that can help ensure a stronger and more successful future. Feed the Future is also promoting an integrated approach to food security that addresses both agriculture and nutrition: for example, the initiative supported nearly 91,000 women farmers in homestead gardening to improve access to nutrient-dense foods and increase family incomes.


In the fight to end hunger and undernutrition, effective coordination and partnership is critical, which is why the U.S. Government is taking a comprehensive approach to advancing global nutrition. Following nutrition commitments made in June 2013, the U.S. Agency for International Development launched its first Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Strategy in May 2014, laying out a roadmap to reduce chronic malnutrition by 20 percent through the Feed the Future and Global Health initiatives, the Office of Food for Peace development programs, resilience efforts and other nutrition investments. The U.S. Government is also a strong supporter of the global Scaling Up Nutrition Movement and a co-originator of the 1,000 Days Partnership. Later this year, the United States will finalize a government-wide Global Nutrition Coordination Plan and participate in the Second International Conference on Nutrition, jointly hosted in Rome by the World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization.


Read on to learn how Feed the Future is playing a key role in the U.S. Government's nutrition efforts and partnering to help give millions of children the opportunity to lead longer, healthier lives. 

President of Honduras Honors Community Health Workers for Achieving Results in Nutrition

Alex Cantarero, Marvin Martinez, Antonio Sanchez and Alejandra Aleman have been serving San Pedro Lomas as community health volunteers for 12 years. "This is the first time anyone has recognized the work we do, and it motivates us to continue working to improve the health of children in our community," they said at a ceremony held in their honor in May. Credit: USAID
























In May 2014, 12 community health colunteers received certificates of recognition for their role in reducing the number of underweight children in their communities from Honduran President Juan Orlando Hern�ndez and Minister of Health Yolany Batres, as well as U.S. Ambassador Lisa Kubiske. The event was developed in the community of San Pedro Lomas, a small town in Honduras' Department of Intibuc�, where health volunteers have helped reduce the number of malnourished children. In Honduras, undernutrition is a significant concern; more than 40 percent of children under the age of five are estimated to suffer from stunting. Read more.

From Humble Beginnings to Food Processing Powerhouse

SESACO employees prepare nutritious food products. The company has expanded dramatically with assistance from Feed the Future. Credit: USADF



















In a conference room at the U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF) in Washington, D.C., Charles Nsubuga stands at the front of the room with an array of brightly colored packages full of nutritious food products and a presentation entitled "The Humble Beginning" projected onto the screen behind him.


Hailing all the way from Uganda, Charles is Managing Director of successful food processing company SESACO. He is in the United States as a guest of the American Soybean Association to learn about school nutrition and health programs. Today, he says, he is visiting USADF headquarters to greet and give thanks to an organization that invested in his small business so many years ago. Read more.

Taking a Comprehensive Approach to Agriculture, Nutrition and Food Security

A farmers stands in her garden in Bangladesh, where Feed the Future is helping families improve nutrition. Credit: SPRING


In a rural village in the southern delta region of Bangladesh, Rajopa lives with her husband and their four children. She says that for years she and her husband have struggled to feed their family on a marginal income. Like many other illiterate women in her village, she was unaware of the need to provide complementary foods to her six-month old child, who was not receiving the calories and nutrients needed for proper growth. But with help from Feed the Future, Rajopa has learned how to turn the unused land around her house into the nutritious fruits and vegetables her family needs to thrive.


Feed the Future has helped thousands of families like Rajopa's across the globe by providing much-needed technical assistance and access to seeds, irrigation and other inputs needed to improve crop production, food quality and availability. But while improved yields and diversified crops are important for smallholder farmers, they don't always mean better nutrition - a prerequisite for future generations of healthy adults with the physical and mental capacity to break cycles of poverty. Read more.

Peace Corps Volunteer Teaches Healthy Eating Habits to Children and Mothers

Kate Young stands in a school garden she helped plant with local mothers in Guatemala. Credit: Peace Corps


Peace Corps Volunteer Kate Young is spearheading a school nutrition project in Guatemala to address malnutrition in her community by educating preschool students and their parents on long-term healthy eating habits.


Young was inspired to pursue the project as a follow-up to a basic health checkup she coordinated for children at her local preschool after an examination at a nearby hospital found that of the children examined, 54 percent were malnourished.


Working with fellow Peace Corps Volunteers and the local government, Young has planted vegetable gardens on the school's grounds and trained the children's mothers in gardening, harvesting crops, nutrition and cooking. She has also helped the mothers plant home gardens for their families. Read more.

Innovative Technology Makes Food Safer for Families

Farmers use Aflasafe on their crops to reduce aflatoxin contamination. Credit: IITA


In developing countries, one of the fastest growing and most dangerous food safety risks is aflatoxin contamination. Aflatoxins are naturally occurring fungal poisons found in crops and livestock products. Not only can they cause serious illness and even death in humans, but contaminated crops harm trade, animal health and human nutrition, including by stunting growth and development in children. The CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health (A4NH), which is supported by Feed the Future to maximize the health and nutritional benefits of agricultural development, is tackling this complex problem as part of a broader effort to address agriculture-related diseases and examine food safety, human nutrition and health risks along agricultural value chains.


One way that A4NH supports food safety is by developing and promoting solutions to pests and diseases that can work in rural areas where smallholder farmers may not have reliable access to goods and services in the formal market. An example of such a solution is Aflasafe™, a safe and affordable bio-control technology that prevents aflatoxin contamination. Read more

Building Uganda's Next Generation of Nutrition Leaders

Feed the Future is supporting students in Uganda to gain practical experience in nutrition professions. Credit: FANTA





Every year, Uganda's universities graduate more than 60 students with degrees in nutrition and high hopes of helping their local communities tackle challenges such as undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies and overnutrition. Although the universities' curricula provide graduates with a solid theoretical grounding in nutrition, it hasn't always been easy to put classroom learning into practice. Universities in Uganda rarely provide training on practical implementation skills such as leadership, project management and monitoring, all of which are essential for reaching nutrition objectives on time and on budget in the field.


Now, an innovative nutrition fellowship program is strengthening graduates' abilities to put their knowledge to work and building the capacity of the next generation of Ugandan nutrition leaders. With support from Feed the Future, the Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance III (FANTA) project established the Uganda Nutrition Fellowship program in 2013 to enhance the skills of nutrition graduates by providing them with a unique mix of practical experience, professional development, leadership training, knowledge sharing and mentorship. Read more. 

Mothers Chart Course for Better Growth in Cambodia

Growth monitoring can help ensure children develop properly. Credit: HARVEST


Heam Theanglay is a village health volunteer in Cambodia's Pursat province. She has tried for years to convince mothers in her area to use growth monitoring, a technique for tracking the relationship between a child's weight and age. Although the practice can help ensure children develop properly, few mothers were monitoring their children's growth.


Until recently, that is. With support from Feed the Future, growth monitoring has taken off among the 168 households of Wat Chre village.


"Nearly all of the mothers here are doing it. They finally understand how important it is to their children's health," Heam says. Read more.


The Feed the Future Innovation Labs draw on the expertise of top U.S. universities and developing country research institutions to tackle some of the world's greatest challenges in agriculture and food security. Read on to learn how their work is contributing to better nutrition for millions of children and families around the world.


Growing the Evidence Base behind Nutritious, Leafy Vegetables

Children from Baraa Primary School in Kenya showing off their school garden of African indigenous vegetables grown for the school's feeding program. Credit: Fekadu Dinssa 


With nutrition in mind, the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Horticulture has been working with an international team of researchers to strengthen the value chain for African indigenous vegetables. Their work began in western Kenya with a food and farm training program established by the Academic Model for Prevention and Treatment of HIV (AMPATH) health system. Doctors there knew patients who were well-nourished would respond better to medical treatment for HIV/AIDS, so the program sought to encourage clients to grow, eat and sell nutritious crops. Some of the most common leafy African indigenous vegetables - amaranth, black nightshade and spider plant - were identified as promising crops for the training program. Read more.

Increasing Food Security and Nutrition for Indigenous Communities in Nepal

A Chepang woman manages post-harvest processing of maize in Hyakrang village, Nepal. Credit: Jacqueline Halbrendt  


The Chepang are an indigenous people in Nepal who live a semi-nomadic existence marked by hunting and gathering, fishing, and swidden agriculture, with some maize and millet terrace cultivation. They face multiple challenges including chronic and widespread food insecurity for half the calendar year and undernutrition in women and children.


The Feed the Future Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resource Management Innovation Lab has been working with the Chepang to improve household food security and nutritional status by increasing production and consumption of plant and animal foods. Read more. 

Peanuts Help Treat Malnourished Pregnant Women in Malawi

A woman feeds peanut-based RUTF to her child in Malawi. Credit: Dr. Mark Manary


The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Peanut and Mycotoxin is using peanuts to improve the nutritional status of undernourished pregnant women in Malawi.


Dr. Mark Manary, one of the Lab's lead scientists and founder of Project Peanut Butter, is identifying and treating severely undernourished pregnant women with a peanut-based Ready-To-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF). Pregnant women are a very vulnerable population in Malawi, where maternal deaths are 1 in 400, the third highest in the world. A large portion of stunting occurs in the womb, which is why good nutrition during pregnancy has a significant impact on a child's growth potential. There is currently no standardized method to diagnose or treat moderate or severe undernutrition during pregnancy. Read more.

Mushroom Farming Means Opportunity and Better Nutrition in Tanzania

Dr. Delphina Mamiro shows off a storage room that holds oyster mushrooms in Tanzania. Credit: AWARD


Delphina Peter Mamiro is mad about mushrooms.


This senior lecturer at Tanzania's Sokoine University of Agriculture is convinced that local farmers can learn to profitably produce oyster mushrooms in order to improve their household nutrition and generate income for their families. One of 390 African women scientists to win a fellowship from African Women in Agricultural Research and Development, a program supported by Feed the Future and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Mamiro is helping advance food security in Tanzania by focusing her research and field work on a nutritious and high-value crop traditionally harvested by women. Read more.

Agri-Nutrition Manual Makes Progress in Kenya

An agronomist and nutrition trainer talks to Margaret Mataa about nutrition and kitchen gardens. Credit: KHCP


Earlier this year, a Feed the Future program in Kenya teamed up with the country's Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries and the Ministry of Health to launch an Applied Basic Agri-Nutrition Resource Manual for Trainers

designed to transform dietary behavior and build the resilience of families who may face shocks such as drought or high food prices.


Since then, the joint effort has equipped and empowered more than 4,600 community health workers, home economists and other country experts and trainers who have reached 745,000 people from more than 98,000 households to train them on how to choose and prepare nutritious foods. Trainings using the manual include cooking demonstrations and practical information on how to establish and maintain a kitchen garden. More than 20,000 kitchen gardens have been established, and local radio programs on nutrition have been launched in three counties. Read more.

Feed the Future Fellow Promotes Food Security and Nutrition among Children in Ugandan Primary Schools


One of the ways Feed the Future supports better nutrition and food security is by increasing the number of agricultural scientists and strengthening scientific institutions in developing countries. To learn more about what that looks like in practice, Feed the Future talked to Richard Bukenya, a Fellow with the  Borlaug Higher Education for Agricultural Research and Development program, who is working to improve nutrition for in Uganda through his research at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign.


Feed the Future supports researchers like Richard Bukenya in food and nutrition science. Credit: BHEARD


Q: Tell us about your research objectives in a nutshell.


A: My long-term goal is to maximize the delivery of adequate nutrition to vulnerable populations in homes and schools as a way to reduce the burden of hunger and malnutrition in Uganda.


Q: From your perspective, why is it important to address malnutrition?


A:Malnutrition undermines national education efforts in Uganda. Undernutrition and micronutrient deficiencies (e.g. iron deficiency and anaemia, zinc and vitamin deficiencies, etc.) are the major forms of malnutrition among school-aged children (6-12 years old). Read more.

Ethiopia Addresses Child Nutrition


In Ethiopia, it is common for children to go to sleep hungry. Food insecurity is high among rural areas, and over 20 percent of children under 5 suffer from chronic malnutrition.


Agrei Admasu is a 32-year-old mother of three from the Amhara region who struggled to feed her children. "I did not know anything about exclusive breastfeeding or balanced, nutritious food preparation. I used to feed my babies anything that was available at home. However, they frequently suffered from diarrhea and vomiting," she says.


Admasu delivered her first two children at home without receiving any education on proper maternal and child health and nutrition practices. Like Admasu, many mothers in Ethiopia lack the knowledge or financial resources to feed their children, which can result in irreversible damage to a child's physical well-being and mental development. Read more.

Nutrition is Key to Ending Preventable Child and Maternal DeathsActingOnCall


The U.S. Agency for International Development announced in June that it is realigning $2.9 billion of the Agency's resources to save up to half a million children from preventable deaths by the end of 2015 - refocusing resources on high-impact programs with proven track records to save the most lives.


USAID also released an action plan revealing how it will prioritize results for the most at-risk families in the most vulnerable countries in partnership with the global community. USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah announced these goals, along with more than $600 million in new public-private partnerships and awards with 26 partners and representatives from the governments of all 24 priority countries at the "Acting on the Call: Ending Preventable Child and Maternal Deathsforum in Washington, D.C.


At the forum, Dr. Rolf Klemm, vice president for nutrition at Helen Keller International, gave a DevTalk on the importance of nutrition in ending preventable child and maternal deaths. Undernutrition is a root cause of more than 8,000 child deaths every day, and children who are undernourished are two to six times more likely to die of infections like diarrhea, malaria and acute respiratory illness; the more undernourished they are, the higher their risk of dying. As outlined last year in a landmark nutrition series in The Lancet, proven nutrition interventions including micronutrient and food supplementation, fortification, improved breastfeeding and complementary feeding can give children a better chance of survival. By integrating these and other interventions, Feed the Future programs contribute significantly to the goal of ending preventable child and maternal deaths.

Agrilinks to Hold Agriculture-Nutrition Events in JulyAgrilinks



Join the Agrilinks community next week for two online events highlighting agriculture-nutrition linkages and USAID's 2014-2025 Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Strategy.

  • On Thursday, July 24 at noon ET, Agrilinks will host an #AskAg Twitter chat on "Linking agriculture, nutrition, and USAID strategy" in conjunction with Devex's Feeding Development campaign. Use the #AskAg and #feedingdev hashtags to participate in the conversation and ask questions!
News News
New mobile project to tackle malnutrition in Africa and Asia
July 8, 2014, Susan MacMillan (ILRI News)
July 7, 2014, Tom Klotzbach (Devex)

July 6, 2014, Brad Plumer (Vox) 
Opinions & Blogs Op-Eds
July 9, 2014, Mike Gesker (Baltimore Sun)

Videos Blogs
This newsletter is intended to enhance collaboration and information-sharing
about implementation of Feed the Future. To subscribe or to find out more
information about Feed the Future, please visit our website. 
In This Issue
President of Honduras Honors Community Health Workers for Achieving Results in Nutrition
From Humble Beginnings to Food Processing Powerhouse
Taking a Comprehensive Approach to Agriculture, Nutrition and Food Security 
Peace Corps Volunteer Teaches Healthy Eating Habits to Children and Mothers
Innovative Technology Makes Food Safer for Families
Building Uganda's Next Generation of Nutrition Leaders
Mothers Chart Course for Better Growth in Cambodia
Feed the Future Innovation Labs Drive Groundbreaking Research on Nutrition
Mushroom Farming Means Opportunity and Better Nutrition in Tanzania
Agri-Nutrition Manual Makes Progress in Kenya
Feed the Future Fellow Promotes Food Security and Nutrition among Children in Uganda Primary Schools
Ethiopia Addresses Child Nutrition

Agrilinks to Hold Agriculture-Nutrition Events in July

Crafting USAID's Livestock Research Agenda: Animal Science Priorities Under Feed the Future
U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit

Connect with us

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter View our photos on flickr   

Connect with us: 
Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  View our photos on flickr

Copyright � 2013. All Rights Reserved.