Non-governmental organization, that emerged as a “spin-off” of academic projects of Central University of Venezuela (UCV).
For 12 years, the “5aday” Venezuela Foundation has worked fostering the recommended intake of 5 portions of F&V in a tropical country with low consumption due to cultural reasons/food habits, prejudices, ignorance, Westernization, high prices of produce, etc.
Average daily consumption of F&V: 150.36 g/day (fruits: 108.13 g, vegetables: 42.23 g). (National Food Consumption Survey, ENCA. April-June 2013. National Institute of Statistics, No. 2, 2014).
The Venezuelan Act of Community Service for Students of Higher Education was identified as a niche of opportunity for “5aday” introducing the project: “5 a Day educational campaigns in the context of the Community Service of UCV”. This represents a formidable chance to permeate public schools with educational and entertaining activities regarding F&V, with the driving force of committed students previously instructed as “5 day” promoters.
Participants and activities:
Faculties of Science, Medicine (Nutrition School) and Agronomy: One outcome as example: Software designed for the exhibition “Health and Nutrition” of the Museo de los Niños de Caracas by Computer Science students: “5aday” plays with “El Trompo de los alimentos” (Food Top)”: the Venezuelan Official representation of Food Groups, in which “5aldía” is the green fringe. Presence in supermarkets promotion POP material, alliance with food industries/services (Nestlé, Del Monte Andina, Edenred); presence in communication media, social networks, etc.
People have become familiarized with the term “5 a day”. More than 500 promoters, 12.000 school children intervened, 25.0000 flyers monthly in Caracas’s supermarkets, 2 years with Nestle´s Healthy kids: 50.000 students, Logo in del Monte Andina´s clarified 100% apple juice and on packaged fresh vegetables by Agrimer CA, along with recipes in Edenred food tickets (1 month: 1 million people reached), 1 book for nutrition of Children with Down, >100 conferences all over the country.
The “Universidad Central de Venezuela” gathers wills around ”5aldia” in Venezuela. For that reason, awareness on the benefits of the intake of five daily portions of fruits and vegetables and the health risks associated with low consumption has started to raise
Fundación “5aldía Venezuela” launched a call to several industries of our country in order to achieve this purpose, from a multidisciplinary platform. ¡And we are counting with more
and more allies!
THE VENEZUELAN PARADOX: WE EAT MORE FRUITS AND VEGETABLES NOW, BUT IT DOES NOT MAKE US HAPPY. HOW CAN THAT BE?
Venezuela is a petrostate with strict policies of prices and exchange controls, a high inflation rate: 180.9% in 2015 (Central Bank of Venezuela), 720.5% in 2017 and 2,068.5% in 2018, as projected by the International Monetary Fund.
The country has a high dependence on food imports, policy that has been reduced by the fall in oil prices, and along with strict controls on the economy has originated a decreased agricultural/livestock production, creating a growing shortage of staple foods.
Currently, Venezuela is going through a major food crisis.
1n 2016, an abrupt change in the food pattern of Venezuelans, occurred, with vegetables and tubers displacing proteins of high biological value (Substitutions) as shown by the % of families according to weekly food purchase. Fruits are only bought by the “non poor” (National Survey of Living Conditions, ENCOVI, 2016)
Since protein sources, flour, cereals, legumes are of difficult accessibility, people have turned to seasonal fruits as a solution to satisfy hunger, especially mango. Fruits are still expensive, but they are available and free if they grow wild and people can pick them.
We have had people having mango fruit for breakfast, lunch and dinner, helping them to reach and complete 3 meals. At least it incorporates a source of micronutrients, non-nutrient phytochemicals, and fiber, but other food groups are needed for a balanced diet.
This has been reported by several news agencies. Some examples:
Unfortunately, this was not best way we wanted to promote consumption of fruits and vegetables, but we are not discouraged!
The Venezuelan agricultural sector has comparative advantages for many crops. Changes in macroeconomic and microeconomic policies can boost them, create competitiveness, strengthen value chains, substitute imports/increase exports, and change the negative balance of trade of the agrifoods in order to guarantee the food and nutrition security of the Venezuelan population.
María Soledad Tapia. email@example.com