The United Nations (UN) has stated that millions of Nigerians have joined the ranks of the undernourished in the past five years.
Its latest edition of the state of food security and nutrition in the world report estimated that almost 690 million people went hungry in 2019 – up by 10 million from 2018, and by nearly 60 million in five years.
To this end, stakeholders in the agriculture and health sectors have emphasized the importance of investing in food security with high rates of malnutrition. The forum was the online and physical launch of the Live Strong with Iron (LSWI) campaign in Abuja, where they called for efforts to address hunger and its consequences, as well as micronutrient deficiencies.
For them, nutrient-enriched crops present a cost-effective, sustainable strategy to improve nutrition for resource-poor farming families or rural communities who rely on staple crops for their diets.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Muhammad Sabo Nanono, expressed concerns on the growing threat of malnutrition and the need for farmers to support scientists who are working to improve human nutrition among the malnourished.
Tapping into agriculture’s potential to make significant contributions to improving nutrition and health, according to the minister, is the reason the government is encouraging farmers to adopt biofortified crops.
He reiterated the government’s determination to address agriculture, and food security, adding that deficiencies of vitamins and minerals in diets make people vulnerable to infection and disease. The Nation