Making business work for nutrition and nutrition work for business through the "Seeds of Prosperity" programme


Utrecht, 13 December 2018 - 

A diverse diet – one incorporating many food types and colours of fruits and vegetables – can be the difference between poor and good health, but an estimated two billion people suffer from vitamin and mineral deficiencies globally. The Seeds of Prosperity programme is a partnership between the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) and Unilever which tackles this challenge in commodity supply chains. The first phase of the programme reached 300,000 people in tea farming communities in India, Tanzania and Kenya, and provided helpful lessons for the next generation of workplace programmes.

Tea workers in the gardens of Assam

Tea workers in the gardens of Assam. © GAIN

Programme successes:

  • The programme reached 300,000 people in tea farming communities.
  • Diets became more diverse in both locations in India.
  • The percentage of women in the programme who reported eating at least 5 food groups (a diet linked to lower risk of deficiency) increased between 15 percent and 24 percent in Tamil Nadu.
  • Handwashing frequency improved in Assam.
  • Programme participants viewed the programme positively and reported feeling increased loyalty to employers.
  • The programme provides valuable insights to inform the next generation of workplace programmes.

The programme is unique because it aims to work within businesses to improve nutrition outcomes, and to develop an approach which can be adapted to suit different businesses and contexts.

Giulia Daleram, Procurement Manager, Sustainable Sourcing, Tea and Coffee, South Asia, Unilever

GAIN, Unilever and IDH are working together to design the next generation of workplace nutrition programmes based on these findings, with the aim of developing an approach which can be adapted to suit different businesses and contexts. Partners are also keen to move beyond tea, and bring in other businesses interested in improving their workforce nutrition – and engagement –  for a more sustainable future.

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