Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with nutrition approach should come forward to address the country's nutrient deficiency – which is endemic causing huge losses in health and economic sectors.
Speakers at a programme said this on Thursday while addressing the grand finale of Bangladesh NutriStar, Nutrition Innovation Challenge at the Hotel Radisson Blu in the capital, said a press release. There are about 25 million SMEs in the country and they can play a vital role.
They requested the entrepreneurs to invest in the food sector for addressing malnutrition which poses a major challenge to the country's development and health sectors.
NutriStar, part of the SUN Pitch Competition 2019-20, was organized by the SUN Business Network Bangladesh, in collaboration with The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, World Food Programme, the Ministry of Industries and Light Castle Partners.
The competition aimed at supporting innovative SMEs to bring solutions to address key challenges in the food system, which limit the food system's ability to deliver affordable, safe and nutritious food for all.
At the event, 10 shortlisted SMEs pitched their business ideas. Three of the SMEs – Feed Me, Khamare, and Saco Enterprise – received the 1st, 2nd and 3rd award respectively for their best innovation.
After evaluating the submitted business proposals, 10 SMEs were shortlisted to participate in the competition.
The 1st place holder Feed Me will get the opportunity to take part in the Global SUN Pitch Competition 2020 which will take place later this year in Singapore.
Habibur Rahman Khan, additional secretary of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, attended as the chief guest at the programme.
Chaired by Luthfun Nahar Begum, additional secretary of industries ministry, Mirza Nurul Gani Shovon, president, National Association of Small and Cottage Industries Bangladesh, Alpha Bah, deputy country director, World Food Programme, Dr Rudaba Khondker, country director, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, Dr Shah Newaz, director general of Bangladesh National Nutrition Council spoke at the event among others.