Food not maize only, government says
By Ellen Pindani:
The Ministry of Agriculture has urged Malawians to redefine the meaning of food by going beyond just maize.
Minister of Agriculture Lobin Lowe said this in Lilongwe on Monday during a National Food System Summit Dialogue Report Validation Meeting.
Lowe said that according to a drafted report on National Food Systems, most Malawians depend on maize as a staple food, and that shortage of the commodity is translated to mean hunger even when the country has plenty of other foods.
“There are other equally important food items. We can change the mindset to consider all the other types of food,” Lowe said.
He further noted that change in diet will not only help in reducing hunger but will as well help in boosting the nutrition wellbeing of citizens.
“As a country, we prefer foreign food. We need to consume all of our local food,” Lowe said.
Agriculture commentator, Tamani Nkhono Mvula underscored the need for government to revise its strategies on food systems to make them sustainable.
“Our food systems in this country are not sustainable. Our diet is mostly carbohydrate-based. We have to ensure that there is a shift from one diet to another or other ways of consumption,” Nkhono said.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, a high population that exceeds our economic growth and poverty are also some major challenges that are affecting our food system.