February 28, 2017
‘Food and Nutrition' has been increasingly recognized as one of the most significant issues in the world. To address the issue in Africa, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) launched the "Initiative for Food and Nutrition Security in Africa (IFNA)" in August, 2016. The Federal Government of Nigeria, in its increasing effort to engage in nutrition improvement, launched the renewed National Policy on Food and Nutrition in 2016.
Under these circumstances, JICA Nigeria Office conducted a survey on nutrition and agriculture in Nigeria from December 2016 to January 2017. The survey aimed at collecting information about major policies/strategies/programmes related to nutrition improvement at both the federal and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) levels, as well as other relevant information such as dietary information that could be used for achieving nutrition improvement mainly through nutrition-sensitive agriculture and food-based approaches.
This study targeted children aged 6 to 23 months and their mothers in rural areas of FCT in order to find out their diets. The result shows that most of the mothers seem to obtain enough energy, but many of them do not obtain enough amount of protein and/or some of micronutrients such as iron. The study also shows that many of the children have some growth problems and do not obtain enough amount of protein and/or some of micronutrients such as iron. These results suggest that the situations could be improved through improvement of the diets.
We discussed the ways of improving nutrition-sensitive agriculture in the study, which suggests 1) promotion of cultivation of nutrient rich foods in FCT and 2) uplifting the farmers' income level through increasing agricultural production and improving their marketing capacity, then encouraging them to buy nutrient rich foods with surplus.
Furthermore, we compiled policies on nutrition of the Federal Government, existing training materials, and the analysis of capacity of frontline officers who would assist rural people on nutrition improvement. Taking into account the study report, JICA Nigeria continues engaging in food and nutrition with a view to finding a better way for the people of Nigeria.
Survey Report can be downloaded from the below link;