Relevance to present situation; India: India has been successful in achieving self-sufficiency in food production; however it faces serious concerns regarding household food insecurity. In-spite of having favorable terms for agricultural trade, the growth of food production has come to a slowdown. India requires accelerating its agricultural growth rate to combat poverty and food insecurity1. This problem is further complicated by micro-nutrient deficiency prevalent in our population, particularly in women and children. The NNMB (The National Nutrition Monitoring Bureau) data indicates instances of under-nutrition among children and chronic energy deficiency (CED) up to 50%.
Relevance to present situation; state of Maharashtra: It is disheartening and worrisome to observe that every 1 in 3rd child is malnourished and belongs to ~22% of Maharashtra population exhibiting stunting in growth, indicative of adverse impact on the physical and cognitive development of our children, eventually leading to irreversible damage. Though GoM has ensured implementation of Rajmata Jijau Mother Child Health and Nutrition Mission, it only targets children from 0 – 2 yrs of age. A recent report in ‘The Hindu’ draws attention to the increasing morbidity in Maharashtra region and reports 1,274 child malnutrition deaths in the past 10 months (April1, 2015). About1 million children (under 5yr) die every year in India due to Malnutrition. (TOI 21 Jan 2015). As per Maharashtra Fact Sheet NFHS-4 (2015-16) data children of age 6 to 59 months 53.6% are found anemic in urban areas and 54% found anemic in rural areas. This points to the need for more inclusive growth and equitable distribution of schemes targeting malnutrition. Hence, In our Cyanofarm project, we propose to remedy the current situation by infusing the world’s super food, approved as Best Food for the Future in 1974 by United Nations; Spirulina. Spirulina has an excellent track record for being Safe for Children (UN World Food Conference at Geneva, Switzerland 8th June 1993).