Integrating nutrition into agricultural and rural development policies: The Brazilian experience of building an innovative food and nutrition security approach

  • Burlandy L
  • Rocha C
  • Maluf R
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Established in 2006, Brazil's National System of Food and Nutrition Security is made up of representatives of civil society organizations and different governmental sectors. Innovative programmes have emerged as a consequence of this institutional framework. Effective connections made at programme design and implementation level have generated concrete results, such as the convergence of different programmes geared to the poorest groups. This chapter analyses different assessments of the Family Grant Programme (Programa Bolsa Familia - PBF), the Food Acquisition Programme (Programa de Aquisicao de Alimentos - PAA) and the National School Meals Programme (Programa Nacional de Alimentacao Escolar - PNAE). Results indicate that PBF promotes greater access to food, improves the variety of food consumed, reduces food insecurity levels and, in some cases, has contributed to the nutritional recovery of children with severe deficits in weight-for-height and height-for-age measurements. However, families participating in PBF are increasingly choosing industrialized foods, following the food profile that prevails in the country. Although the prevalence of stunting and wasting is decreasing, the prevalence of overweight and obesity is increasing, particularly in urban areas, and especially in lower income groups. Hence, PBF is being implemented in an integrative way with programmes such as PAA and PNAE so as to improve the availability and consumption of fruits and vegetables in public schools and promote purchases directly from family farmers. These programmes have been designed based on a comprehensive, systemic and participatory approach, thus contributing to the establishment of joint actions among agriculture, health, nutrition and social sectors, and forging closer links between food production and healthy eating. Challenges are related to conflicts of interests and institutional capacity in some municipalities.

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  • L Burlandy

  • C Rocha

  • R Maluf

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