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Body seeks role for private sector against malnutrition

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The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) has said there can be no lasting solutions to ending malnutrition in the country without the active engagement of the private sector.

The body stressed the need for private sector to be enabled to play full and active part in addressing malnutrition and making safe and nutritious foods more available and affordable for Nigerians through their investments.

The National Coordinator, Scaling Up Nutrition Business Network (SBN), Ms. Ibiso Ivy King-Harry, a programme supported by GAIN and the World Food Programme, noted that public private partnerships are key to improving nutrition.

To achieve this, she said SBN has established alliances and facilitated partnerships and collaborations to enhance the enabling environment for businesses in food and nutrition.

She disclosed that SBN was established as a global programme in 2012 to identify, organise and develop a network of companies in the food and nutrition space and support them in making specific positive contributions to nutrition.

According to the Country Director of GAIN, Dr. Michael Ojo, SBN Nigeria has delivered increased participation for the private sector in nutrition over the last five years, saying though the country has seen significant successes in improving nutrition, the challenge of malnutrition still remains.

While lamenting that Nigerians are still consuming a very narrow range of food, he said they are not eating enough of the right types of foods and are now increasingly eating too much of the wrong types with key indices of malnutrition such as stunting in children and micronutrient deficiencies in women’s reproductive age.

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