Submission to the 2021 Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Nutrition Accountability Framework – Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN)
The 2021 Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Summit, taking place on 7-8 December 2021 in Japan, aims to accelerate progress on defeating malnutrition by bringing together key stakeholders including governments, donors, philanthropies, business, civil society and academia. It mobilizes new policy and financial commitments to curb the impacts of COVID-19 on nutrition and health, elevating nutrition as a continuing and essential development priority. Working together, we can ensure that everyone, and especially women and children, have the nutrition they need to live healthy and productive lives. In this way, we are positively contributing to achieving the 2030 agenda of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) commits to support these goals by improving access to nutritious and safe foods in a sustainable way.
We will register two major commitments in the Nutrition Accountability Framework in relation to improving diet quality for millions of people around the world.
Working together, we can ensure that everyone, and especially women and children, have the nutrition they need to live healthy and productive lives.
Firstly, in partnership with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, GAIN will reduce malnutrition by achieving positive changes in diet quality for six million consumers at the Bottom of the Pyramid (BoP) in Kenya, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Benin and Uganda by December 2026. The programme will invest €80 million to transform food systems leading to lasting changes. The focus is on improved diet quality and ultimately, better nutrition outcomes, with a focus on BoP consumers earning less than 3.2USD per day as the beneficiaries, starting with their nutritional needs, also looking at the wider context and working back throughout the food system. The programme will report using independent assessment of impacts using internationally recognized measures of diet quality (principally diet diversity metrics) through the increased supply of nutritious, safe foods (NSF) (availability, affordability and market functioning); increased demand for NSF (desirability, motivation and knowledge); enhanced governance of the food system to support NSF consumption; and strengthened coordination and linkages across the portfolio of investments.
Secondly, GAIN will work with national governments to increase access to fortified foods across six geographies through 2022-2025: Bangladesh, Ethiopia, India and Nigeria with support from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Benin and Uganda through the above mentioned partnership with the government of the Kingdom of Netherlands. Through our programming, technical assistance will be provided to governments, food producers and civil society. Also, a global alliance for food fortification will be strengthened by improving coordination and communication across key development partner organizations through the Global Fortification Technical Advisory Group and GAIN will support the establishment of food fortification digital monitoring tools in at least three countries. Altogether, this will ensure that at least 1.2 billion people will have access to fortified staple foods and that at least three governments will establish new food fortification mandates or significantly strengthen existing programmes by 2025.
On top of these commitments, we will also provide leadership to, initiate or support the following initiatives:
- With support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Eleanor Crook Foundation and others, GAIN and Incofin Investment Management will jointly establish a USD50 million Nutritious Foods Financing Facility (N3F) to support Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) providing nutritious safe foods for domestic markets in Sub-Saharan Africa. N3F aims to impact diet quality directly, while advancing equity by prioritizing women-owned SMEs in its investments, promoting food safety and reducing the environmental impact of the food supply chain. In addition to the fund, N3F will also provide technical assistance for SMEs and develop impact metrics for measuring commercial investments in nutrition.
- The SUN Business Network (SBN) will continue to raise awareness of the role of SMEs in relation to nutrition and food systems, and support the capacity of SMEs to provide nutritious foods. This includes the recruitment of 3,000 SMEs across Africa, Asia and Latin America by the end of 2024. Together with the World Food Programme, GAIN will continue to host the SBN.
- The Workforce Nutrition Alliance, co-led by GAIN and the Consumer Goods Forum, will continue to support employers to adopt and expand workforce nutrition programmes. It aims to impact three million employees in their organizations and supply chains by 2025.
- Act4Food Act4Change youth leaders will continue to advocate for and act on food systems transformation. Together with Food Foundation, GAIN commits to host the coordination secretariat in support of Act4Food Act4Change as the movement grows to become self-sustained.
- GAIN will be active in the Alliance for Anemia Actions, supporting the efforts to consolidate and prioritize evidence gaps, and linking with our existing programmes to enhance the potential for action.
GAIN has also endorsed the Tokyo Compact on Global Nutrition for Growth in support of the vision and goals of N4G.
In the lead up to Nutrition for Growth, GAIN has been actively involved in its preparations. As one of the supporting partners to the Business Constituency Group (BCG), GAIN has worked closely with private sector networks to develop areas of N4G commitments for businesses, both large and small. This effort has been truly unique in bringing different associations together for a common goal. We were grateful to be asked by the Government of Japan to participate in the Advisory Board for the N4G. Where requested by national governments, we have been involved and supported the discussions and process of commitment-making in the countries in Africa and Asia in which GAIN works.
We recognize that many people and organizations have generously given their time and energy to make Nutrition for Growth a success, and wish to extend our thanks to the Government of Japan for its commitment towards improving nutrition around the world. New policy and financial commitments are essential to fuel health as well as social and economic prosperity, especially in the aftermath of COVID-19 and in the final decade of the Sustainable Development Goals. Working together, we can connect stakeholders and sectors in food systems to accelerate progress on defeating malnutrition.