Technische Hochschule Köln
FEMOZ is conducting an analysis of the impacts of food and nutrition policies in Mozambique regarding various sectors and approaches. The methodological framework for this study is the “Food Environment Policy Index”, developed by the INFORMAS (1) network and applied in 56 countries worldwide.
The EPI explores policy actions in 14 different domains, as for example composition of products, labelling, governance, price policies, resource allocation etc, each on defined by a comprehensive set of indicators. A number of good practice examples worldwide serve as benchmarks for the evaluation of food and nutrition policies.
The FEMOZ team elaborated on the basis of official policy documents, strategies, plans and programmes as well as existing studies and evaluation an evidence report. The preliminary results have been discussed in workshops in Maputo and Nampula, the comments and additions serve for the elaboration of the final report. This report is the basis for prioritising policy measures for the promotion of healthy food environments in workshops, foreseen in February next year.
The mentioned workshops in Maputo and Nampula were well frequented by specialists working in the field from governmental organizations, non-governmental organizations and the academic sector. Participants highlighted the importance of a comprehensive food and nutrition policy for overcoming the widespread under- and malnutrition in Mozambique. The country has a high level of chronic malnutrition and -as consequence of new nutrition patterns characterized by the increasing use of industrially highly processed food – a rapid increase of “Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs)” like cardiovascular diseases, obesity, diabetes, certain types of cancer etc. As many other countries of the global south Mozambique is experiencing the “Double Burden of Malnutrition”, posing major challenges to the country's already deficit-ridden health system. Workshop participants emphasized the high importance of policy coherence of different government sectors. Especially the agricultural policy hardly considers nutrition indicators in their political strategies. A good data base and a systematic monitoring are important conditions for addressing the problems of food environments in the country. Price and fiscal policy are undertaking partial interventions but are far away from a systematic promotion of healthy nutrition. The high dependence from external funds and donors and the priority of humanitarian aid hamper the design and implementation of middle and long term strategic food and nutrition policies.
(1) The International Network for Food and Obesity/NCDs Research, Monitoring and Action Support is a global network for the promotion of healthy food environments.
Picture credits: Christine Bohn (Frankenförder Forschungsgesellschaft, FFG)