Agriculture is considered as a prime candidate for nutrition sensitive programming. Agriculture is and will continue to play an essential role in ensuring an accessible supply of diverse, nutritious food at all times, either from the market or from farmer’s own production. In the past agricultural development projects have relied mainly on increasing production and raising incomes to reduce poverty and enhance food and nutrition security. While this approach has its benefits, it is now widely recognised that higher levels of production and income alone have a limited impact on improving nutrition.
The members of the working group on nutrition agree that it will be of great importance in the upcoming years to choose wisely investment leverage points. For 2016 the discussions focused therefore on “nutrition-sensitive” agriculture, an approach that seeks to maximize agriculture’s contribution to nutrition. This strategy stresses the multiple benefits derived from enjoying a variety of foods, recognizing the nutritional value of food for good nutrition, health and productivity, and the social significance of the food and agricultural sector for supporting rural livelihoods. The approach also entails targeting poor households, promoting gender equity, and providing nutrition education so that household resources are used to improve household members’ nutrition, especially that of women and young children. Finally, it involves linking agriculture to sectors that address other causes of malnutrition, namely education, health and social protection.
In line with the SDGs and the diverse targets and indicators behind each SDG, including SDG2, a multisectoral approach. A new way of thinking is needed to address nutrition challenges — including maternal and child undernutrition. Nutrition can be tackled from different perspectives, including health, food, agriculture and environment. Platform members place great emphasis on the synergies and linkages between ARD and food security and nutrition interventions, favouring agricultural diversification and increased production of local, indigenous and underutilised food crops as important steps towards improved nutritio