WHO Revises Food Aid Regulations

By: Michele Wolfson

The World Health Organization (WHO) says it plans to revise its regulations on food aid in order to be more effective at reducing moderate malnutrition among children under the age of five. There is currently a lack of essential vitamins and minerals in foods that are sent to impoverished countries, which is leading to rising rates of malnutrition.

The head of WHO states that while it's likely that changes to enforce stricter guidelines will make food aid more expensive in the short-term, it is necessary because it will be an effective way to prevent starvation and poor quality of life to continue.  WHO is hopeful that their new regulations will be implemented in a timely matter before the end of 2011.

Doctor's Without Borders also believe that the United States is providing sub-standard food that is deficient in vital ingredients to fight malnourishment. They are urging WHO to carry out stricter nutritional standards and to provide food with higher quality ingredients where food aid is needed.

The new regulations will entail changing some of the blending techniques of soy-corn based flours, as well as improving the length of time that products can be stored. In order to combat hunger around the world, WHO believes it is counteractive to provide food aid to starving children if there is an absence of nutrients. Changing the current guidelines may take time, but the organization believes that it is a worthy food cause that will provide better aid to those who are starving.

Photo:Peter Casier

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