Tuesday, April 22, 2008

IBFAN critical of Indian child nutrition scheme providing processed food

An article in Thaindian news yesterday highlights concerns of health advocates, including our colleagues in the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN).

The government allocates funds for food for children attending day care centres under the Integrated Child Development Service, but the small amount of money is being used to buy processed food rather than local food in some states in a link with private business.

"With such a low allocation, packaged food cannot provide required nutrition. We should go for hot cooked food from available local products,” said Arun Gupta, a member of the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN), the report states. See:

Some other states are using locally sourced food.

When in Brazil a couple of years ago, I investigated the school food programme there, which is held up as a model for the world. Locally sourced food is provided to a menu developed by a nutritionist. Expenditure and performance is overseen by elected councils, which include representatives of parents. Any journalists interested in further information are welcome to contact me.

I will say more about the attempts to use nutrition schemes to promote processed foods in future. Sometimes they are used as an attempt to industrialize the whole feeding process, so undermining breastfeeding.

No comments: