Enhancing Nutrition of Upland Farming Families (ENUFF)

Project completed

In Lao PDR, chronic malnutrition is a pressing issue affecting social and economic growth. Stunting prevalence is amongst the highest in the world, affecting an estimated 44% of children under five years of age, and exceeding 60% among children from upland ethnic communities. ENUFF project will contribute to the implementation of the national Multisectoral Food and Nutrition Security Action Plan (MSFNSAP), where various aspects like nutrition-sensitive farming, health, hygiene and care practices will be converged, leading to behaviour changes and an improved nutritional status in particular of women and children.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Agriculture & food security
Agricultural development
Agricultural policy
15.06.2015 - 30.06.2020
CHF  7’000’000

The Lao PDR has seen strong economic growth over the past few years, but social progress has lagged behind, especially the indicator for MDG1 on nutrition is seriously “off track”. Chronic malnutrition is declining at a very slow pace; stunting prevalence is high at 44% which equivalents to 385’000 children under five years of age (Global Nutrition Report 2014). Under-nutrition leads to enormous economic costs in Lao PDR with annual losses estimated at approximately
USD 197 million or 2.4% of GDP.

The Lao government has acknowledged the issues of chronic malnutrition and its burden with regard to the social and economic development drawbacks. Chronic malnutrition and food insecurity have been high on the agenda for the Lao government as shown in the recent high-level national nutrition forum and in the national nutrition strategy 2016-2025. The importance of combating malnutrition in the country is uncontested. Malnutrition is a multi-sector issue and by linking good agriculture practice, natural resources management and nutrition, it is believed that the impact can be tremendous.


Family and child nutrition in remote and ethnically diverse upland farming communities in two of the seven priority provinces (according to the national strategy) has improved through nutrition-sensitive agriculture production, sustainable management of natural resources and enhancement of good practices in health and hygiene, including a more conducive and efficient policy and institutional framework.

Target groups

Direct beneficiaries: 30,000 upland farmers in 40 villages in Houaphanh and Oudomxay provinces will benefit from both livelihood and nutrition interventions especially women and children of ethnic groups.

Indirect beneficiaries: 72,000 upland farmers (including women and children of ethnic communities) in the target provinces will benefit from the nutrition and livelihood sensitization activities.

Medium-term outcomes

Outcome 1:
Food production and diversity are improved at household level for consumption.

Outcome 2:
Women’s, in particular mothers’ and those in the age of reproduction, knowledge and skills about nutrition and health care have increased and lead to more appropriate feeding practices.

Outcome 3:
Physical and economic access to nutritious and diversified food is improved through income generation activities, market and short value-chain opportunities.

Outcome 4:
The policy, strategic and institutional framework is more conducive to address and prevent food and nutrition insecurity.


Expected results:  

  • Farming families have benefited from practical trainings at the village level in order to diversify and improve their production according to their nutrition strategy, which includes seeds banks and veterinary pharmacies.
  • Behavioural change is induced at intra-household level through communication about the benefits of dietary diversity, nutrition and agro-biodiversity (BCC campaign).
  • Farmers, especially women, are sensitized and capacitated in the areas of food hygiene, use of safe water, hand hygiene and safe disposal of child faeces.
  • Household-based processing, innovative technologies, post-harvest management, market and short value-chain opportunities are introduced or strengthened.
  • Health and Nutrition Centre staff is capacitated through various need-based trainings.
  • Policy dialogue, coordination mechanism and management of nutrition centre are enhanced.

Results from previous phases:  

This is the first phase of a new project.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
International or foreign NGO
  • Other international or foreign NGO North
  • SDC Field Office
  • SNV Development Organization

Other partners

Rural Development Agency (RDA), Green Community Development Association (GCDA), Lao Women’s Union, MOH-National Nutrition Centre (NNC) and Nutrition Secretariat, DAFO, PAFO, DOH, POH, and SUN CSA.

Coordination with other projects and actors

Synergies with SDC-funded projects: TABI, LURAS, SURAFCO, PRF; GPFS’s Sustainable Nutrition for All project implemented by a SNV-run consortium.

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    7’000’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    6’604’378
Project phases Phase 2 01.07.2020 - 31.12.2024   (Current phase)

Phase 1 15.06.2015 - 30.06.2020   (Completed)