Selling Produce in Malawi

Farmers in Mlumbe Village in Malawi prepare some of their produce for market. Feed the Future's Wellness and Agriculture for Life Enhancement (WALA) project integrates conservation agriculture, small scale irrigation, watershed management, and commercial marketing to raise incomes and ensure food security. Mlumbe farmers said the new techniques helped their crops survived a three-week drought. Photo by Sharon Ketchum, U.S. Mission to the UN Agencies in Rome

Processing Peanut Oil

In Malawi, a peanut oil cooperative improved their processing technologies with voluntary technical assistance from American farmers as part of the USAID Farmer-to-Farmer Program. The program promotes sustainable economic growth, food security and agricultural development worldwide. The cooperative’s improved process has increased farmer incomes and provided a healthier alternative to commonly-used animal lard. Photo by CNFA

Border Crossing at Malawi and Mozambique

To address barriers to trade that contribute to food insecurity, the USAID Southern Africa Trade Hub (SATH) rolled out an integrated border management program to improve coordination at border posts between Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique and Tanzania. While action plans are forthcoming in FY2012, the program did conduct border operations assessments and stakeholder meetings last year. Photo by Gina van Schalkwyk, USAID/SATH

Accessing Market Information

A smallholder farmer places a bid to sell maize to the World Food Programme. Photo by Sharon Ketchum, U.S. Mission to the UN Agencies in Rome

Nutrition in Malawi

A Peace Corps Volunteer trains his local community in Malawi on the nutritional benefits of growing soy. Photo by Peace Corps

Commemorating Secretary Clinton's Leadership

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton listens to dairy farmers in Malawi explain their work during a visit to the Lumbadzi milk bulking group in August 2012. Feed the Future supports the dairy sector in Malawi, including the Lumbadzi group, to help reduce poverty and improve nutrition. Photo by U.S. Department of State

July 17, 2014
Dr. Mark ManaryA woman feeds peanut-based RUTF to her child in Malawi.

The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Peanut and Mycotoxin is using peanuts to improve the nutritional status of undernourished pregnant women in Malawi.

Dr. Mark Manary, one of the Lab’s lead scientists and founder of Project Peanut Butter, is identifying and treating severely undernourished pregnant women with a peanut-based Ready-To-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF). Pregnant women are a very vulnerable population in Malawi, where maternal deaths are 1 in 400, the third highest in the world. A large portion of stunting occurs in the womb, which is why good nutrition during pregnancy has a significant impact on a child’s growth potential. There is currently no standardized method to diagnose or treat moderate or severe undernutrition during pregnancy. 

Peanuts are an ideal therapeutic food because, in addition to being high in protein, they are almost 50 percent fat or oil, which is a key element in the treatment of acute malnutrition.

“The beauty of the peanut formulation having so much oil in it is that its energy density is very high,” says Dr. Manary. “This means a spoonful of peanut-based food is equal in calories to 5 or 6 spoonfuls of a traditional cereal like corn or rice. If you are undernourished, you need to get those nutrients in you to catch up. The high oil, low water content of this peanut-based food means that it doesn’t spoil sitting around in a mud hut with a grass roof for two or three weeks. The food safety issues here are nominal, whereas if you cooked some kind of specialized porridge or dough and left it sitting around you couldn’t eat it the next day.”

The peanut-based RUTF has been well-received by Malawian women and is very popular. 

May 19, 2014
The question is no longer if we will end hunger for the more than 800 million people who don't have enough to eat today, but when.
The U.S. Government's Feed the Future initiative is helping us get there. Watch this video to learn more about our progress. 
January 30, 2014
MalawiGovernment officials from Tanzania, the United States and the United Kingdom attend the launch of the New Alliance in Malawi.

In December, joining members of civil society, the private sector, donor organizations and other Government of Malawi officials, Malawi’s Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Dr. James Munthali, presided over the country’s official launch of the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition. Malawi is one of ten African countries that have joined the New Alliance since it was announced by President Obama in 2012.

The launch event was held at Afri-Nut’s groundnut sorting and processing facility in Lilongwe. Afri-Nut is one of 23 companies that submitted Letters of Intent to invest in Malawi’s agriculture sector as part of their participation in the New Alliance. Many of these companies hosted exhibitions at the launch event, including Seed Co, the National Association of Smallholder Farmers of Malawi, Malawi Mangoes, Bio Energy Resources Limited, Ex Agris Africa, Dairiboard, Universal Industries and Rab Processors. These companies represent investments throughout Malawi’s agricultural value chain, from seed production to food processing.

In total, private sector companies have pledged more than $150 million in investments as part of Malawi’s New Alliance Cooperation Framework. This sum is in addition to $495 million pledged by development partners to support agriculture and food security in Malawi over the next three years.

Following the launch, private sector leaders joined senior Government of Malawi officials from a broad range of Ministries for a Public-Private Dialogue to advance commitments under the New Alliance. The Government of Malawi has pledged to move forward on 35 policy actions that will improve food security facilitate growth in Malawi’s agriculture sector. Some of these actions have already progressed, such as the removal of export bans for all crops except maize and rice as well as proposed revisions to Malawi’s Seed Act, which will align the country’s seed regulations with the Southern African Development Community and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa.

As part of the dialogue, private sector participants presented case studies with recommendations for policy action around the priority areas of land and water, greater availability of certified seeds, and improved terms for agricultural finance.

As outlined by President Obama at the 2012 G-8 Summit, the New Alliance aims to accelerate responsible investment in African agriculture and lift 50 million people out of poverty by 2022. Benin, Malawi, Nigeria and Senegal all launched Cooperation Frameworks under the New Alliance over the course of 2013.


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