Background. Concern about food security and its effect on persistent undernutrition has increased interest in how agriculture could be used to improve nutritional outcomes in developing countries. Yet the evidence base for the impact of agricultural interventions targeted at improved nutrition is currently poor. Objective. To map the extent and nature of current and planned research on agriculture for improved nutrition in order to identify gaps where more research might be useful.Methods. The research, which was conducted fromApril to August 2012, involved developing a conceptual framework linking agriculture and nutrition, identifying relevant research projects and programs, devising and populating a “template” with details of the research projects in relation to the conceptual framework, classifying the projects, and conducting a gap analysis. Results. The study identified a large number of research projects covering a broad range of themes and topics. There was a strong geographic focus on sub-Saharan Africa, and many studies were explicitly concerned with nutritional impacts on women and children. Although the study revealed a diverse and growing body of research, it also identified research gaps. Few projects consider the entire evidence chain linking agricultural input or practice to nutritional outcomes. There is comparatively little current research on indirect effects of agriculture on nutrition, or the effect of policies or governance, rather than technical interventions. Most research is focused on undernutrition and smallfarmer households, and few studies target consumers generally, urban populations, or nutrition-related non communicable diseases. There is very little work on the cost-effectiveness of agricultural interventions. Conclusions. On the basis of these findings, we make suggestions for research investment and for broader engagement of researchers and disciplines in developing approaches to design and evaluate agricultural programsfor improved nutrition.
Welcome to the Nutrition-Sensitive Extension Library!
The GFRAS Nutrition Working Group (NWG) collected and organized the materials in this library so that extensionists, program developers, researchers, and decision makers would be able to access existing resources related to agricultural extension and advisory services (AEAS), and nutrition. Growing attention to the need to make food systems more responsive to human nutrition has motivated related AEAS activities, yet NWG members identified that project-level materials were often hard to find. It is our hope that by making resources available in a searchable platform, individuals working in this area can build off of the experience of previous activities and effectively meet the needs and opportunities that they encounter.
Do you have a resource that you would like to make available in the library? Please submit it here!
About the Nutrition Working Group:
The NWG aims to bring global attention to leveraging RAS for improved nutrition by engaging relevant stakeholders: practitioners, researchers, donors, etc. It was initiated by GFRAS, the INGENAES project, and FAO in 2016.
Agriculture for improved nutrition: The current research landscape
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