In partnership with GIZ, HKI is piloting a project in Bangladesh to promote nutrition-sensitive agricultural practices, optimize the use of micronutrient-enhanced agricultural inputs, and disseminate information to increase gender-sensitive nutrition-related awareness with the overall goal to improve dietary diversity and micronutrient intake, with specific emphasis on women.
Baseline to midline surveys, including a 24-hour dietary diversity recall for adult women, were conducted with intervention (n=160) and control (n=176) groups using a difference-in-difference randomized design. A separate food consumption survey was administered to a subset (n=60 households/400 individuals) of midline respondents.
Dietary diversity for women and micronutrient intake by men and women are significantly higher in the intervention group. The number of women consuming a minimally adequate diet is greater in the intervention area than in the control area (80%, 51% – 9-item WDDS). Men (19-50 years) and boys (7-18) in the intervention group consumed significantly more iron (p=0.02, p=0.004), calcium (p=0.01, p=0.001), zinc (p=0.000, p=0.000), and Vitamin A (p=0.05, p=0.000) than men and boys in the control group. However, although women and girls demonstrate higher overall micronutrient intake in the intervention area, this difference is only significant for Vitamin A intake by girls (p=0.001) and zinc intake by women (0.001).
The project has been successful in promoting improved quality and quantity of diet. Food consumption data show that not only are diets more diverse, but project participants are consuming more micronutrients than non-participants. Mean intakes across micronutrients indicate both men and women are moving closer to estimated average requirements.