Zero child hunger: breaking the cycle of malnutrition

March 1, 2012
Agriculture and Rural Development
South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa (includes East and West Africa)


Is there enough evidence to show that increased household income and a better diet can improve children’s nutritional status? Drawing from a recent systematic review (Masset of agricultural interventions aimed at improving the nutritional status of children, the key findings are:

  • Nutrition-focused agricultural interventions are short-term and cannot address the root causes of malnutrition.
  • Agricultural interventions to tackle malnutrition are not reaching the very poorest and those most at risk to chronic hunger.
  • Nutrition-focused agricultural interventions may increase income from one source but they may also result in reduced income from other sources.
  • Bio-fortification (fortifying foods with vitamins and minerals) may help but is not yet a proven solution.


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