Partnering to support at-risk population groups

Supporting public, public-private and civil society partnerships to help at-risk population groups 
In 2014 we became a founding member of the GAIN Nordic Alliance. Together with partners such as the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition1 (GAIN), the Confederation of the Danish Industry, DanChurchAid, and Tetra Pak we have gained valuable knowledge about building sustainable supply chains for nutritious and safe foods in countries with a high rate of malnutrition among children and women.

Being a member enables us to support public, public-private, and civil society partnerships for the betterment of at-risk population groups. Partnerships offer the opportunity to gain even more experience and sharpen resourcing strategies to make a positive difference. They also leverage the expertise of each partner, building a multi-disciplinary approach. A critical success factor is the commercial viability for the partners, the farmers and the dairies in local communities.

GAIN Nordic has successfully implemented several projects, learning many valuable lessons along the way. Some examples include:

  • A project based in Ethiopia is working to enable a cheap fortified yoghurt for children and lactating women
  • An initiative to develop an ultra-high temperature processing (UHT), nutritious drink produced from local milk and fortified with key vitamins and minerals missing from the diet of many Zambians.

Addressing malnutrition in Ethiopia through energy-efficient food solutions
Unfortunately, developing countries are especially vulnerable to the effects of pandemics or natural disasters. In such situations, food supplies and consumer purchasing power are drastically changed, especially among the poor. Arla Foods Ingredients has long-standing relationships with local food industries and NGOs in several countries and, together, we are focused on addressing hunger and malnutrition by securing the supply of food.

The Sustainable Food Partnership is an ideation and innovation platform led by DanChurchAid along with Arla Foods Ingredients. After initially being granted start-up funding in 2018, it has recently been selected to receive funding as a 2020 Scale-Up Partnership by P4G (Partnering for Green Growth and Global Goals) to scale and deliver on nutritious solutions developed in the first two years of the partnership.

The partnership aims to address the challenge of malnutrition in Ethiopia through energy-efficient food solutions, promoting food security for vulnerable people living in refugee camps and local host communities. The current focus is on developing a business model for the local production of an affordable protein-rich biscuit in Ethiopia, based on local ingredients sourced from local farmers.

In this scale-up phase, the Sustainable Food Partnership will:

  • Leverage the acquisition of best-in-class knowledge within the food production industry to create sustainable outcomes
  • Develop a replicable model to ensure a sustainable food supply for all

Good nutrition as a solid investment for the future

For some years now, Arla Foods Ingredients has been a partner of the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Business Network, which is rooted in local activities in 61 SUN countries around the globe. 

The SUN movement was launched in 2010 and is led by countries dedicated to the notion that good nutrition is a solid investment to make for the future. The political leaders of SUN countries commit to engaging all sectors of central and local governments in a collective effort to combat malnutrition.
Their governments establish policies that are supported by various stakeholders, including civil society, the UN, development partners, business enterprises and researchers.

Nutrition projects require a multi-faceted approach, so it makes sense to involve numerous stakeholders that are aligned on the desired outcomes. Every country and every partner can bring something unique to the table. The projects and policies delivered as part of the SUN movement have helped to mobilise global support to scale up nutrition at country level, empowering governments and their supporters to make a truly positive impact.