Tackling vitamin A deficiency with biofortified sweetpotato in sub-Saharan Africa.
Review statusPeer Review
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Low, J.W.; Mwangab, R.O.M.; Andrade, M.; Carey, E.; Ball, A.-M. 2017. Tackling vitamin A deficiency with biofortified sweetpotato in sub-Saharan Africa. Global Food Security. (Amsterdam). ISSN 2211-9124. 14: 23-30.
Permanent link to cite or share this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/81126
Orange-fleshed sweetpotato (OFSP) is a rich plant-based source of beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A. In sub-Saharan Africa, sweetpotato is known as a food security crop but most varieties grown are high dry matter white-fleshed types, lacking beta-carotene. In 1995, researchers recognized the potential of OFSP varieties to address widespread vitamin A deficiency in SSA using an integrated agriculture-nutrition approach. With their partners, they confronted conventional wisdom concerning food-based approaches and institutional barriers, to build the evidence base and breed 42 OFSP varieties adapted to farmer needs and consumer preferences. Subsequently, a multi-partner, multi-donor initiative, launched in 2009, has already reached 2.8 million households. This review summarizes that effort describing how the changing policy environment influenced the process.