Quaker's 'Bowl of Growth' Initiative Nurtures The Philosophy Of Poshan Right, Toh Future Bright

The Quaker ‘Bowl of Growth’ program currently aims to improve community health by identifying and assisting 1,000 mildly malnourished children aged 3-5 years in the Mawal & Mulshi Blocks of Pune District
‘Bowl of Growth’ program
‘Bowl of Growth’ program

Child malnutrition persists as a significant global and Indian challenge, particularly impacting children during their critical developmental stages, hindering physical growth and overall well-being. This issue carries lasting repercussions, affecting educational achievements and future livelihoods.

As per the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly half of the deaths^ among children under 5 years of age are linked to undernutrition.

View a short video on Quaker Bowl of Growth, click above
View a short video on Quaker Bowl of Growth, click above

In India, 1 out of 3 children under 5 years suffer from malnutrition and government has taken measures to combat the same. In Pune district, National Family Health Survey (NFHS) data~ reveals concerning figures, indicating that 30.7 per cent of children under five years were stunted in 2019-21, 32.7 per cent were underweight, 31.4 per cent were wasted and 14 per cent were severely wasted.

Quaker, a brand that stands for nutrition, in collaboration with the PepsiCo Foundation, PepsiCo R&D, and MAMTA HIMC, launched the Quaker Bowl of Growth Program in April 2023. This initiative targets rural areas in Pune, Maharashtra, aiming to fight against child malnutrition through a multi-faceted approach.

The program revolves around three core pillars: Nutrition, Awareness, and Education.

Central to its nutritional efforts is the introduction of 'Panjiri,' a locally inspired recipe tailored for mildly malnourished children. Crafted with Quaker Multigrain & Millet*, enriched with 18 essential vitamins and minerals, Panjiri ensures both nourishment and taste.

Awareness is heightened through engaging sessions for children and caregivers, while structured workshops focus on education, aiming to improve the quality of life for both groups.

Additionally, the program utilizes various Information, Education, and Communication (IEC) materials, including posters, leaflets, flipbooks, and an illustrated comic book.

A recent addition to the initiative is a long-format ad film 'Dohale Jevan Poshanchi Vaati,' which weaves cultural narratives with the importance of nutrition, resonating deeply with audiences. This emotionally evocative approach not only addresses nutritional needs but also fosters a profound connection with viewers. The film highlights the vital significance of nutrition, depicted through the perspective of a concerned child regarding the well-being of their unborn sibling.

In her remarks on the film launch, Sravani Babu, Associate Director, and Category Lead – Quaker, PepsiCo India, said, “Quaker’s endeavour to fight against malnutrition started last year when we partnered with MAMTA HIMC to launch Quaker Bowl of Growth Program in Pune. We have focused on the local needs of the community to nourish, educate, and raise awareness from the very start, whether in the form of Panjiri the food served to children or driving awareness.”

PepsiCo India introduced the Quaker Bowl of Growth initiative as part of its PepsiCo Positive (pep+) strategy, aimed at driving positive change.

The Quaker ‘Bowl of Growth’ program currently aims to improve community health by identifying and assisting 1,000 mildly malnourished children aged 3-5 years in the Mawal & Mulshi Blocks of Pune District. This involves conducting standard age-appropriate anthropometric assessments to evaluate their nutritional status and medical screenings. Once identified, these children receive daily servings of ‘Panjiri,’ a locally accepted recipe made from a specially formulated Quaker multigrain & millet product, enriched with 18 essential vitamins & minerals.

The program's effectiveness is measured by assessing anthropometric changes at 3 and 6 months post-intervention, supplemented by regular evaluations to track recovery from malnutrition. Our approach is to intervene before malnutrition becomes critical by providing education and spreading awareness and also support with a nutritional bowl to avoid slipping into critical stage. Untreated mild malnutrition can progress to more severe forms, necessitating intensive clinical intervention.

Simultaneously, the program involves educating parents and caregivers through targeted sessions on nutrition, strengthening the community's understanding of proper nutrition.

*Quaker Multigrain & Millet product is a part of Quaker Bowl of Growth initiative, to provide nutrition to children aged 3-5 years only. Does not claim to provide nutrition to infants. Not for commercial sale.

~National Family Health survey – 5, 2019-2021, https://main.mohfw.gov.in/sites/default/files/NFHS-5_Phase-II_0.pdf


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