Food security is one of the Netherland’s traditional development priorities

Food security is laid down as one of four main themes of Dutch development cooperation policy in the government’s strategy paper: ‘Investing in Global Prospects’ (released in 2018).

According to the government’s budget, €337 million (US$373 million) will be allocated to food security in 2018. Eliminating hunger and malnutrition is one of the three priorities of the Netherlands’ overall strategy for food security. In terms of specific objectives, in 2018 the Netherlands aims to improve the food intake of 15 million children.

A particular focus within this priority is the nutritional status of adolescents, particularly of girls of reproductive age, given the importance of nutrition during pregnancy. Therefore, reproductive health and gender aspects have been integrated into food-security programs.

Key commitments by the Netherlands include a pledge of €300 million (US$332 million) to the Nutrition for Growth Initiative (2013-2020), with funds equally divided between nutrition-sensitive and nutrition-specific interventions.

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The Netherlands implements a multi-stakeholder approach within ODA, combining government, civil society, the private sector, and knowledge institutes. This public-private partnership (PPP) approach is also known as the “Dutch Diamond”. The main PPP within the field of nutrition is the Amsterdam Initiative against Malnutrition (AIM). Its aim is to leverage the experience of Dutch companies in the food and nutrition industries across all stages of the food value chain to ensure sustainable improvements in nutrition in Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, and South Africa. The Dutch government and AIM both contribute €11 million to the initiative (total budget €22 million for 2014-2018). The rest of the 2018 budget to combat hunger and improve nutrition will be channeled through UNICEF, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), and bilateral programs with partner countries.

The Directorate of Inclusive Green Growth (IGG) is responsible for policies related to food security

Within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS) is responsible for designing and coordinating the implementation of Dutch development policy. Within DGIS, the Directorate of Inclusive Green Growth (IGG) focuses on policies related to food security, climate, water, energy, and natural resources. The directorate includes a specific thematic cluster on food security.