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Tropentag, September 19 - 21, 2016 in Vienna, Austria

"Solidarity in a competing world - fair use of resources"

Scaling-Up Nutrition: Implementing Potentials of Nutrition-Sensitive and Diversified Agriculture to Increase Food Security

Constance Reif1, Hadijah Mbwana2, Wolfgang Stuetz3, Michelle Bonatti1, Stefan Sieber1

1Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF), Inst. of Socio-Economics, Germany
2Sokoine University of Agriculture, Food Science and Technology, Tanzania
3University of Hohenheim, Inst. of Biological Chemistry and Nutrition, Germany


Food and nutrition security is still one of the most pressing challenges to constantly growing populations in Sub-Saharan Africa. The nutritional situation in Tanzania has only slightly improved in the last decade despite high rates of economic growth.
Scale-N aims at ameliorating the critical food security situation and nutritional status of the rural poor in Tanzania by implementing nutrition-sensitive agricultural innovations and nutrition education. Following the core principles of participatory and collaborative research, the project design includes the following steps (i) analyses of the food and nutrition situation; (ii) application of nutrition-sensitive interventions; (iii) measurements of impacts of the interventions on the nutritional status, livelihoods, and food security and (iv) up-scaling of successful interventions at farm-, policy-, and educational levels.
To identify the baseline situation of the local population, Scale-N conducted a household survey including the following core topics: (1) socio-economics; (2) disease history and medical conditions; (3) home gardening; (4) nutrition knowledge attitudes, perception and practices; (5) food production, distribution and consumption; (6) problem perception and community drivers; (7) measurement of nutrition status of mother-child-pairs: More than 650 households (mothers) from four different study sites were interviewed and anthropometrics and haemoglobin of mother-child-pairs were measured on study sites; blood samples were drawn for further analysis on iron status (serum ferritin, sTfR), infection markers (CRP, AGP), vitamin A status (serum retinol, RBP, pro vitamin A carotenoids) and zinc status (plasma zinc).
Outcomes of the survey and the nutrition value chain analysis will be evaluated to design a tailored education programme for local target groups on a household level and a specific training programme for facilitators will be set up. In this participatory approach, local population will be involved in learning processes to develop and improve nutritional knowledge of local nutrient-dense foods and optimised post-harvest treatments.

Keywords: Food and nutrition security, nutrition education, nutrition value chains, participatory action research

Contact Address: Constance Reif, Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF), Inst. of Socio-Economics, Eberswalder Str. 84, Müncheberg, Germany, e-mail: constance.reif@zalf.de

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