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FNCO Launches National Nutrition Campaign and Promotes Household Farming


Libuseng Molato

The Food Nutrition Coordinating Office (FNCO) launched a National Nutrition campaign in Lesotho in June intending to combat diseases caused by poor nutrition and promote household farming across the country.

Led by the Prime Minister’s office, this initiative will reach all districts of Lesotho.

Dr. Masekonyela Sebotsa, Director of FNCO, emphasised the long-term health implications of poor nutrition. She highlighted issues such as stunting, underweight children, and the increasing challenge of obesity leading to diabetes and hypertension.

“To address nutrition-related challenges, the government’s strategy involves concerted efforts across ministries. For example, the Ministry of Agriculture will promote diverse crop production, while the Ministry of Education will ensure nutritious school meals,” Dr. Sebotsa stated.

She stressed the importance of changing dietary norms and promoting self-sufficiency in food production among Basotho.

“Now that the campaign has been launched, its implementation will be widespread and sustainable,” Dr. Sebotsa affirmed, saying every district will play a role in reaching even the remotest communities.

Reflecting on Lesotho’s agricultural heritage, Dr. Sebotsa underscored the need to revive traditional practices of growing food for improved health outcomes and economic resilience.

Amanda Khozi Mukwashi, the UN Resident Coordinator, commended Lesotho’s leadership in nutrition advocacy.

She particularly praised His Majesty’s guidance as the African Union Nutrition Champion and FAO Special Ambassador for Nutrition.

“I urge the private sector to collaborate with the government to reshape dietary options and improve nutrition across communities,” Mukwashi urged.

She highlighted the campaign’s timeliness amidst challenges like the El Nino drought, which has worsened food insecurity in many households.

“In alignment with Lesotho’s National Strategic Development Plan II, achieving food security is crucial and The UN remains committed to supporting Lesotho in achieving Sustainable Development Goal 2 – Zero Hunger.”

The integration of nutrition-focused policies across ministries is expected to enhance service delivery and community well-being, supported by sustainable agricultural practices.

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