The nutritiously-dense product on the packaging line at Valid NutritionWithin Malawi and the rest of Southern Africa, there is a high demand for Ready to Use Complementary Foods (RUCF): highly-nutritious, portable, and shelf-stable products that can play a major role in improving the nutrition of children and pregnant women in particular.

The Strategic Partnership Grant from USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub added a new processing line to the facilities at Valid Nutrition Malawi (VNM), which was already operating a Ready to Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF) production facility accredited to ISO 22000 standards. The grant provided new technology and equipment as well as product branding and marketing required to put RUCF into production and distribution.

Objectives

  • The key objective is to upgrade VNM production facilities through the installation of a new processing line by PMD packaging and to offer technical assistance to enable Valid Nutrition Malawi to develop, produce, and market RUCF in Malawi and in the region, improving the nutrition of children and pregnant women.
  • As groundnuts form a major ingredient in RUCF production, the project will also provide an additional market for aflatoxin-compliant groundnuts produced by small-scale farmers in Malawi.

Beneficiaries

  • Thousands of women and children in need of RUCF in Malawi.
  • Smallholder groundnut farmers in Malawi who are supplying PMD with the aflatoxi-compliant groundnuts required to make the product.

Results and Outcomes

  • Trade Hub technical assistance on product development and marketing was delivered in January 2015.
  • A new PMD packaging line procured through the Trade Hub grant has been installed.
  • Product launch is expected to take place at the end of 2015. In the first year, Valid Nutrition projects production of 45 tons of the RUCF with the goal of increasing production to 75 tons in the second year.

Photo: The nutritiously-dense product on the packaging line at Valid Nutrition