Civil Society Organizations Rallies for Consumption Of fortified Foods to Curb Malnutrition

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Civil society Organizations Caritas and Imbaraga have urged for the consumption of fortified foods to help curb malnutrition

The call was made at a round table discussion organized by the two organizations at lemigo hotel on Tuesday . The roundtable discussion was supported by The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affair and Cooperation (DGIS) under the voice for change partnership through SNV.

In his opening remarks the Imbaraga legal representative Jean-Paul Munyakazi  said that malnutrition has had an effect on the development of the country but acknowledged that the government and other stakeholders  were putting in place better initiatives to address the issues at hand which include food security and staple food production.

In her address to the participants Her Excellence Frederique Maria De Man the Netherlands  ambassador to Rwanda noted that though fighting malnutrition has been ongoing for some time and good results have been achieved  more needed to be done.

“The long term consequences of malnutrition like stunting are irreversible  and they impact on the countries development cannot be undermined but the Country’s has agricultural sector has the opportunity to end malnutrition through producing of fortified foods like high iron beans and orange sweet potatoes” she said

She also noted that though the country is facing increased pressure on arable land due to increasing population Rwanda has continued to produce better raw food stuffs compared to the past. She added that the country can end malnutrition through deployment of better methods of farming and production of fortified food crops.

For the private sector the ambassador called for the seize of the opportunity of developing the food value chain to process and add value to foods likes rice.

The main focus of the round table discussion was to initiate a national consultation on the status of production and consumption of bio fortified nutritious crops in Rwanda ,how to increase and diversity bio-fortified nutritious crops at the grass root level in rural areas ,share the best practices at local and national level and propose strategic actions needed to fight against hunger and malnutrition within food producers themselves and consumers on the other hand for better nutrition and hence improving the health and wellbeing of the Rwanda community as whole

MR. Musoni Augustine a researcher with the Rwanda Agriculture board said that fortified beans can play a very leading role in fight against malnutrition since they are very rich in iron and are calories free.

“Beans are top priority for food security and nutrition because they production is high and are consumed by most people in the country” he emphasized

DR  Julius Sindi Kirimi while speaking at the event encouraged the production of potatoes noting that while the tubes maybe consumed by people the leaves can in turn be given to cattle that will give  quality milk plus manure in form of cow danger. Also noted that these leaves can be prepared as vegetables.

DR Karim further emphasized that it is very important to note how research projects, designs and implementations are carried if agriculture is to have an impact.


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