Vitamins and minerals (micronutrients) have the power to unlock human potential around the world. But a staggering 3 billion people globally, perhaps more, cannot afford a healthy diet that delivers the micronutrients people need to survive and live healthy and productive lives. In sub-Saharan Africa and southern Asia, this is the case for 57 percent of the population, a situation which will only worsen in the context of a deepening global crisis of hunger and malnutrition brought by the COVID-19 pandemic. Without addressing the crisis of micronutrient malnutrition, we will not achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
Food fortification, biofortification, and micronutrient supplementation work through food and health systems as proven, practical ways to improve access to micronutrients. Improving access to essential vitamins and minerals across the lifespan protects brain development before and after birth, prevents devastating birth defects, strengthens immune systems, reduces disease, enriches lives, and improves productivity and economic prosperity. By utilizing these cost-effective interventions, equity and resilience can be improved on a global scale.
A nutritious diet is a human right. When even the poorest households and the most vulnerable communities have access to a baseline of essential vitamins and minerals, well-being improves, and societies become more resilient in times of crisis.
This webinar will:
- Focus on new developments and new initiatives regarding evidence-based nutrition interventions that address micronutrient malnutrition through food and health systems, namely food fortification, biofortification, and supplementation in addition to the promotion of healthy diverse diets that are rich in micronutrients.
- Celebrate progress and make a case for new and increased SMART commitments from member states and donors to improve micronutrient intake.
- Emphasize the importance of adequate micronutrient intake to overall health, productivity, and development and the urgent need for new and increased investment.
- Highlight promising innovations and emerging opportunities to scale up micronutrient interventions.
- Focus attention on countries that are incorporating micronutrient solutions into their UN FSS Transformation Pathways and into their Nutrition for Growth Commitments.
- Highlight micronutrient solutions as a critically important bridge connecting the UN Food Systems Summit to Nutrition for Growth
- Launch a Call to Action for donors, governments, and private sector leaders to commit new investments and actions that rapidly scale up micronutrient interventions. The Joint Statement is available here.
The event will be moderated by Rajul Pandya Lorch, Member, Board of Directors, Micronutrient Forum & former Director of Communications and Chief of Staff, IFPRI (USA) and will feature:
- Saskia Osendarp, Executive Director, Micronutrient Forum, Netherlands
- Victor Aguayo, UNICEF, Director, Nutrition and Child Development, USA
- Werner Schultink, Executive Director, Iodine Global Network, Canada
- Lynnette Neufeld, Director Knowledge Leadership, GAIN, Geneva
- Rasaq Oyeleke, Deputy Director Nutrition and Food Safety at Ministry of Agriculture, Nigeria
- Ferew Lemma, Public Health Specialist and Nutritionist, Ministry of Health, Ethiopia
- Juliana Auma, founder, SHAK -Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Association, Kenya
- N Arlappa, Deputy Director, National Institute of Nutrition, India
- Maureen Mutheka, Youth Leader @Act4food Act4Change Campaign
Audience members are encouraged to pose questions for speakers, share experiences and contribute to the #FutureFortified conversation.
This webinar will be available in English & French.