One million children under 5 years of age in Nepal (or 36 percent of the population) suffer chronic malnutrition and 10 percent suffer from acute malnutrition. The difficulty in acquiring protein is a contributing factor to the nutrition gap in the south Asian country. In an effort to help combat those issues in Nepal, as well as Honduras and Ethiopia, Tyson Foods Inc. announced a series of grants to OneEgg, a non-profit organization that delivers eggs to children in need.
The investment in Nepal focuses on building the capacity of local farmers to supply eggs to 12 schools and 700 children, with a goal of reaching 7,000 children over the next two years. Employees of Cobb-Vantress, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tyson Foods, will provide technical assistance and training to farmers and Tyson Foods will contribute $50,000.
In addition, Shreenagar Agro, a leader in Nepalese agribusiness, will provide $50,000. The collaborative project is expected to provide one egg per day three times per week to children from Rupandehi, Palpa, and Kathmandu districts. Kathmandu lies in the central part of Nepal, Rupandehi represents the low land of western Nepal and Palpa represents the hilly district of western Nepal.
“After the 2015 earthquake devastated Nepal, we saw an opportunity to help change the lives of those who were suffering,” said Moushimi Shrestha, co-founder, Shreenagar Agro. “Because of the partnership with Tyson Foods, OneEgg and Cobb-Vantress, we are expanding those efforts and impacting even more lives with just one egg a day.”
A video highlighting the project and Shreenagar Agro’s efforts to provide more eggs to children in Nepal can be viewed here.
The launch of a OneEgg chapter in Honduras will focus on providing eggs to expectant mothers and their families. Tyson Foods will contribute $65,000 and in-country partner Honduras Outreach International (HOI) will provide $50,000. The project will also include research, education, and outreach efforts in the Valley of Sierra de Agalta, Olancho, to continue to investigate the value of eggs on children’s physical development and to share the farm business model with others in developing countries that could implement it.
The OneEgg and HOI team have been working with a U.S. based university to design a study around the project, which will formally evaluate the impact of egg consumption during a child’s first 1,000 days (gestation through the age of two). Once the study has been approved by the university, the researchers will begin working with HOI and OneEgg to collect data from the project and measure the impact on both mothers and children.
Another OneEgg chapter will be launched in Ethiopia in collaboration with Project Mercy to introduce the production and consumption of eggs into the Yetebon community. Employees of Cobb-Vantress will provide technical assistance and training to farmers, Tyson Foods will contribute $56,500 and Project Mercy will provide $56,500.
“Getting more eggs to more kids is what OneEgg is all about. We are very excited about the partnership with Tyson Foods and Cobb-Vantress and our new partners in Ethiopia, Honduras and Nepal,” said Chris Ordway, OneEgg executive director. “Protein is essential for cognitive and physical development – especially in young kids. Children who receive adequate amounts of protein before age 5 have higher IQs and stronger mental development.”
As part of its corporate social responsibility efforts, employees of Cobb-Vantress and Tyson Foods have provided technical assistance and training to previous OneEgg projects in Rwanda and Uganda. Last year’s project in Haiti marked the first financial commitment from Tyson Foods as a newly constructed farm provides a continuous supply of eggs for sale in local markets, while providing new jobs for local residents. As a not-for-profit project sponsored by Tyson Foods and Cobb-Vantress, the proceeds from the enterprise remain in Haiti and keep the farm operational.
More than 10,000 children around the world are now receiving eggs every day as a result of these collaborative projects.
“It is an absolute privilege and honor to be part of a team that understands and applies resources to project partnerships such as OneEgg,” said Dave Juenger, senior advisor, CVI support services, Cobb-Vantress. “As an industry leader, we have the skill sets and ability to provide the technical assistance that allows small holder farmers an opportunity to become self sufficient while providing an essential protein source to the rural community, especially the children. I believe our efforts and commitment can bring upon positive change that is generationaly impactful.”
“We’re raising the world’s expectations for the good food can do,” said Debra Vernon, senior director, corporate social responsibility, Tyson Foods. “The OneEgg Nepal project is a perfect example of our purpose coming to life and the integration of sustainable thinking throughout our work.”
Source: Tyson Foods Inc.