Treatment for Severe Acute Malnutrition Receives $5.8 Million Boost

Nutriset, the French manufacturer of Plumpy'nut, a fortified peanut-based paste widely used in the treatment of severe acute malnutrition (SAM), has announced a two-year, $5.8 million commitment to combat malnutrition in the Sahel region of Africa.

The company, which since 2005 has invested more than $10.4 million in capital and production equipment for local manufacturers of Plumpy'nut, will provide an additional $2.6 million in 2012 and $3.2 million in 2013 to eleven local manufacturers and two nongovernmental organizations. In each of the two years, nearly $1.7 million of that will be earmarked for manufacturers in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Niger, and Tanzania, where famine and food insecurity are especially acute.

Employing local labor, procuring local crops, and employing sustainable production systems, the PlumpyField network of franchisees produces and distributes Plumpy'nut and other Nutriset ready-to-use therapeutic foods (RUTCs) in Africa, the Caribbean, and India. In 2011, the thirteen network members collectively produced 35 percent of the RUTF used in the field and helped feed 1.2 million children.

"Nutriset's pledge to significantly increase our investment in our PlumpyField members will help them create local solutions to devastating food crises," said Nutriset CEO Adeline Lescanne. "We hope the $5.8 million will provide our partners with the tools they need to combat current famines and help promote the nutritional autonomy of all afflicted regions of the world."