The European Union through its project Program for Improved Nutrition in Sindh (EU-PINS1) will help the agriculture sector of the province to boost its nutrition-sensitive agriculture production in its sub-sectors of livestock, fisheries, and farming by fully adapting to the effects of the climate change.
By M. Waqar Bhatti
Speaking to officials of the Sindh environment and energy department online from London, John K O’Dea, Senior Advisor of EU-PINS1, said that their primary objective was to improve nutrition in all types of food along with boosting growth in agriculture production related to micronutrient food products.
He offered the help from his organization in a meeting held in the conference room of the Environment, Climate Change and Coastal Development Department, Government of Sindh (ECC&CDD), on Tuesday under the chairmanship of its Secretary Muhammad Aslam Ghouri.
The EU official maintained that in order to achieve the primary objective, they are already in league with different line departments of the Sindh government and now extend their help to ECC&CDD to train farmers community how to adapt to the effects of climate change in their production activities including farming, fishing, and cattle farming for the ultimate goal of obtaining a higher amount of nutrition in their food-related produce.
Underlining the main objectives of PINS-1, he said that making stakeholders aware of how to boost the production of micronutrient foods i.e. meat, fish, eggs, milk, quality fruits, and vegetables, was their main focus for the province of Sindh.
For this purpose, sensitizing key players to follow climate change adaptive practices in the production of micronutrient food was a must to improve nutrition in food and growth of food production as well.
He pointed out that the highest proportion of iron deficiency anemia affecting 23.8% of women of reproductive age is prevailing in Sindh.
Also, serious deficiencies in vitamin A & D, calcium, zinc, and iodine are common in people because of low per capita consumption of animal-source food like beef, mutton, chicken, and fish, which has high-quality protein.
He further said that throughout Pakistan, only 14.2% of children aged 6-23 months enjoy a sufficient minimum dietary diversity.
Therefore, the role of nutrition-sensitive food sectors agriculture, livestock, and fisheries cannot be overlooked and they must be made adaptive to all changes at global and local levels, including environmental, technological, and financial.
“As a result of lower than required nutrition, nearly 45.5 percent population of the province does not grow to its potential because of 23% wastage of the space to improve nutritious value in food products”, he added.
Originally published at The news international