During the last week of December 2015, Strategic Partnership Grantee Valid Nutrition prepared to participate in a global tender for the supply of Ready to Use Complementary Food (RUCF) to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). Without the grant through USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub, this would not have been possible.
Andrew Chinguwo, the General Manager of Valid Nutrition Malawi, is enthusiastic about the prospects of becoming one of the first companies in southern Africa to become a leader in the supply chain to feed thousands of children and prevent the occurrence of chronic malnutrition.
Valid Nutrition already supplies Ready to Use Therapeutic Foods (RUTF) for the treatment of severe acute malnutrition in Malawi. It has worked closely with both UNICEF and the Malawi government to manufacture and distribute over 25 million sachets used to feed and treat over 250,000 children.
As a result of the Strategic Partnership grant from USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub, Valid Nutrition was able to open a new product line to create Ready to Use Complementary Food: smaller sachets of peanut paste used to supplement diets in order to fill nutritional gaps and avoid chronic malnutrition. The new product line is designed to produce 66,000 sachets of RUCF per day and over 2,000 cartons of sachets per month. One carton can provide the necessary nutritional supplements for five children for four months.
In addition to the direct employment opportunities created at Valid Nutrition, the new product line should also boost agricultural production and farmer incomes as demand for peanuts increases. As the first to manufacture this type of product in southern Africa, Valid Nutrition also expects to export to other countries in the region, increasing foreign income earnings for Malawi and contributing to the reduction of chronic malnutrition in the region.
You can view a video on this grant at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k1djwQRqp24
Photo: The new machine procured through the USAID Strategic Partnership Grant can produce 66,000 sachets of fortified food per day. One carton of 546 sachets is sufficient to provide the necessary nutritional supplements for five children for four months