International Community Must Increase Investments In Early Childhood Nutrition

Project Syndicate: The Nutrition Challenge
Bjørn Lomborg, visiting professor at the Copenhagen Business School and director of the Copenhagen Consensus Center

“…[I]mproving child nutrition is one of the most transformative investments that governments and donors can make. … Malnutrition … has an extensive impact on society … In fact, malnutrition continues to be one of the main barriers preventing children, communities, and countries from realizing their full potential. … The next 12 months will be critical to keeping the spotlight on nutrition and mobilizing the resources needed to make global targets reachable. The World Bank’s Investment Framework for Nutrition estimates that $70 billion is needed over ten years to achieve key World Health Organization targets on undernutrition by 2025. But progress has not been rapid enough to meet the globally agreed nutrition targets in the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals — in particular, ending hunger and all forms of malnutrition by 2030. Additional investments in early childhood nutrition are crucial, and should be a high priority for donor and recipient governments, multilateral development organizations, and philanthropic foundations. The case for such spending is clear, and the payoffs will almost certainly be enormous” (7/18).