Focusing on improved nutrition to deal with complex challenges, such as obesity and non-communicable diseases (NCDs), is becoming more important, which is why the International Food Policy Research Institute’s (IFPRI) second annual edition of the Global Nutrition Report proves to be a useful and comprehensive guide.
The publication of the Global Nutrition Report 2014 marked the first-ever comprehensive look at the enormous scale of malnutrition, the measures being taken to combat it, and the need for further action.
Launched in September 2015, the Global Nutrition Report 2015: Actions and Accountability to Advance Nutrition and Sustainable Development continues the emphasis on accountability established in the first report and documents whether countries, donors, companies and other stakeholders have carried out the investments and actions to which they have committed themselves.
The 2015 report has a much greater focus on obesity and non-communicable diseases and incorporates new features, including analysis of concurrent child stunting and wasting in some countries, and more detailed assessments of countries’ progress on meeting global nutrition targets. The report also identifies opportunities to advance nutrition through climate policy, food systems and business.
Matt Kovac, Policy Director at Food Industry Asia (FIA) says, “This ambitious and comprehensive report should spur more effective action to improve nutrition where it is most needed.”
He adds, “The Report clearly outlines that although a great deal of progress is being made in reducing malnutrition, it is still too slow and too uneven."
The report has been prepared by an Independent Expert Group, with IFPRI overseeing production and dissemination with the support of a Secretariat based at the Institute of Development Studies. It contains a wealth of additional online data and analysis, including nutrition profiles for 193 countries and 28 regions and sub-regions, analysis of food systems and diets and scoring of businesses on their performance in delivering access to nutrition, all available online.
Dr Yee Ting Wong, Head of Nutrition, Innovation & Partnerships at FIA, says the launch of the report and the data and analysis will also support the work being carried out in the region by the Asia Roundtable on Food Innovation for Improved Nutrition (ARoFIIN).
“ARoFIIN is a partnership that brings together senior practitioners from across government, academia, industry, non-governmental and civil society sectors in Asia to initiate and sustain regional, multi-stakeholder dialogue on the role of food innovation in tackling obesity, chronic diseases and the double burden in the region.”
“The data and analysis in the Global Nutrition Report 2015 supports a progressive science-based approach on the causes and drivers of obesity and chronic disease. It could help improve clarity on the barriers and enablers for R&D and food innovation in the region,” adds Dr Wong, who also serves as Coordinator for ARoFIIN.