Harvestplus works with partners in dozens of countries across Africa, Asia, and Latin America to advance biofortication as a response to hidden hunger, particularly among smallholder farming communities and other low-resource populations.
HarvestPlus has a significant presence and/or is involved in a notable program in the countries below. Click on a country for more information about the activities there of HarvestPlus and its partners.
Zinc rice is the primary biofortified crop available in Bangladesh, with the first variety developed with the Bangladesh Rice Research Institue and the International Rice Research Institute in 2013.
Democratic Republic of Congo
The DRC is a country of 94 million people, of whom 70 percent face food insecurity, and 43 percent suffer from malnutrition. An estimated 42 percent of children under five are stunted, and 32 percent of preschool-age children are anemic. An estimated 61 percent of children under five have vitamin A deficiency.
HarvestPlus has operated in India since 2011, in close collaboration with partners in the public and private sector. Biofortification is endorsed at the highest levels of government as a strategy to address widespread micronutrient deficiencies.
Indonesia’s Minister of National Development Planning (BAPPENAS) to accelerate the rollout of NutriZinc, the country’s first variety of zinc rice. Other varieties are in development.
A National Micronutrient Survey conducted in Kenya shows that 26.3 percent of preschool-age children between 6 to 59 months, 16.5 percent of school-age children aged between 9-14 years, and 41.6 percent of pregnant women had anemia. The prevalence of zinc deficiency is also high at 83.3 percent among children 6-59 months of age and 68.3 percent for pregnant women.
HarvestPlus Malawi promotes iron bean, vitamin A orange sweet potato, and vitamin A maize varieties, and helps partners develop strategic agricultural value chains to ensure a sustainable and profitable supply of biofortified foods.
Biofortified crops are grown by more than 2 million smallholder farming households in Nigeria. Women in these households are engaged through HarvestPlus’ innovative Smart Mother Platform.
Production and consumption of zinc-biofortified wheat is rapidlly growing in Pakistan. Zinc defiency can contribute to stunting which affects more than 1 in 3 children in Pakistan.
In Tanzania, a country of 57 million people, 58 percent of children under five and 45 percent of women aged 15 to 49 are anaemic, while 36 percent of women aged 15 to 49 are deficient in vitamin A.
Uganda was the first country where delivery of biofortified crops began, 16 years ago. By end-2020, more than 810,000 farming households were growing iron beans and 1,1 million were growing vitamin A maize.
Biofortified crops available in Zambia include iron bean, vitamin A maize, and Vitamin A orange sweet potato. Working with food companies such as Shais Foods, a strong demand-led value chain is being developed for these crops.
An estimated 20 percent of children under five in Zimbabwe have vitamin A deficiency, and 72 percent of children have iron deficiency. HarvestPlus has worked with FAO and others to address this through biofortification.