The role micronutrient powders in improving complementary feeding practices

Abstract Number Theme Presentation Type Cover Approved
0317 Innovative program or delivery models Poster Not Approved


Abstract Content


To analyze how micronutrient powder (MNP) interventions may strengthen complementary feeding practices.


Key informant interviews and literature review.


MNP play an important role in ensuring adequate micronutrient intake and reducing anemia in young children. Furthermore, the use of a specially designed framework highlighted how behavior change communication (BCC) is an essential component for influencing household actions – not only to generate demand for MNP and promote correct and sustained MNP use, but also to raise awareness of key infant and young child (IYCF) practices. The actions at MNP policy, delivery, and BCC levels collectively influence household actions in the form of IYCF practices. All actions are supported by formative research and monitoring & evaluation to inform program design and optimize impact. Experiences from 11 MNP programs from different geographic regions reinforced the potential of MNP interventions to add renewed focus and resources to existing IYCF programs. MNP programs provided data, albeit limited, in support of improvements in IYCF practices, such as increased breastfeeding until 24 months, and increased proportions of children receiving complementary foods with adequate consistency, frequency and diversity. There was no evidence of risks of MNP promotion for optimal IYCF practices.


There is a limited but growing body of evidence suggesting that the implementation of MNP interventions, often integrated with programs seeking to improve IYCF, can contribute to improved complementary feeding practices. However, better integration of MNP and IYCF programs and improved documentation of results is needed to unleash the full potential of MNP interventions for IYCF programs.

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