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Improving nutrition through accountability, ownership and partnerships

Impressions and recording from the Brussels Briefing, May 20, 2015
Brussels Development Briefing no.41
June 3, 2015 By: F&BKP Office Image: Brussels Briefings

On May 20, 2015, the Brussels Development Briefing n.41 on the subject of “Improving nutrition through accountability, ownership and partnerships” was held at the ACP Secretariat in Brussels. It addressed nutrition as one of the essential pillars of human development, and allowed for sharing about the slow global progress: even as undernourishment decreases, new issues such as micronutrient deficiencies, obesity and chronic diseases are on the rise and prevalent in countries undergoing economic and nutrient transitions. It also tackled the need for investments in national level data in order to prevent and improve nutrition outcomes, which is a significant cause of poverty and brake on socio-economic development, especially in African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) countries.

For information about the programme of the Briefing, including direct access to the PowerPoint presentations of the keynote speakers, please visit the website of Brussels Development Briefings.

For a live recording of the Briefing, please watch the web streamed view on YouTube.

The Food & Business Knowledge Platform team drafted some informal notes for interested readers, which you can download here (PDF).

Observations Food & Business Knowledge Platform

  • Several keynote speakers and participants stressed the importance of gathering more data in order to foster an evidence-based debate on nutrition trends and on the effectiveness of nutrition interventions and also for accountability purposes.
  • Interventions discussed during the meeting were quite similar to those discussed at international meetings such as ICN2 or Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN), and included interventions to make agricultural value chains more sensitive to nutrition outcomes. The European Commission specifically highlighted interventions on the National Information Platforms for Nutrition (NIPN), facilitated by a group of donors and UN agencies as a concerted response to countries’ needs.
  • Several keynote speakers confirmed the importance of addressing nutrition problems through a multi-sectoral approach, in order to effectively tackle underlying causes. Marie Ruel (IFPRI) advised to develop/embed the right set of incentives for multi-sectoral work at all levels. Stineke Oenema (Concord & Icco) advised that BoP consumers should be reached and governments need to stay in control, also during multi-stakeholder collaboration.
  • Several speakers confirmed the responsibility of the agricultural sector to contribute to improved nutrition. Fokko Wientjes (DSM) shared his concerns about agricultural policies often being focused on staple food not meeting the needs of the body.
  • The session confirmed that further knowledge sharing and exchange is needed as a key intervention to make current and future international and European efforts more effective. Lawrence Haddad: “We do not yet know enough about why countries are doing well (responding well) to nutrition interventions and why others are not.”

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