Nearly Half of Haitian Children under 5 Suffer From Malnutrition, UNICEF

The children of Haiti are in need of nutrition support. Recently, a senior UNICEF official in Haiti has said that nearly one in two children under the age of five, suffer from malnutrition in the Francophone Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country, for reasons including poverty, unfavorable feeding practices and disease. If a child is not nourished with proper nutrients during the first 1,000 days of his life, his brain and body never properly develops. In a far reaching consequence, it would affect his intelligence, school performance, and income and in a greater consequence, the chances of his contribution toward the overall development of his country will be almost negligible. Under-nutrition puts children at greater risks of infection and delayed recovery. This translates into the unnecessary loss of about 3 million young lives a year all over the world.


Therapeutic food can be a part of the solution, provided it goes together with the overall development that guarantees food securities to every family. Meds & Foods for Kids (MFK) is a nonprofit organization which is working tirelessly to prevent child malnutrition in Haiti. MFK is producing and providing Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF), one kind of fortified peanut-based food named Medika Mamba" or "Peanut Butter Medicine" and Plumpy'nut (from France based Nutriset).

These are high-calorie peanut-based pastes for therapeutic feeding of malnourished children. MFK was founded in 2004 by a pediatrician Patricia B. Wolff from St. Louis, Missouri. The company distributes one third of its annual 450 tonnes production in Haiti. The product is very expensive, but on humanitarian ground MFK sells them at a special rate to the humanitarian and development actors like UNICEF who buys and supplies them through community health centers in cooperation with the Government of Haiti.

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