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TAGUIG CITY, 1 JULY 2022 – The National Nutrition Council (NNC) held an online kick-off event for this year’s Nutrition Month campaign. July has been designated as Nutrition Month by President Ferdinand Marcos in 1974. Forty-eight years later, Nutrition Month is an institutionalized activity in the country. Despite the pandemic, various stakeholders led by the NNC continue to hold the month-long campaign to raise awareness on nutrition. This year’s campaign is guided by the theme, “New normal na nutrisyon, sama-samang gawan ng solusyon!” which calls for collective effort to improve nutrition and in building resilience among Filipinos for a better new normal. As the country moves towards a more COVID-19-resilient Philippines and transition to the new normal, the campaign for good nutrition in the new normal becomes more relevant than ever.

The pandemic has both negative and positive impact on nutrition. More families are suffering from hunger based on hunger incidence surveys of the Social Weather Stations. The Rapid Nutrition Assessment Survey (RNAS) of the Department of Science and Technology – Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST-FNRI) confirmed that 2 in every ten children were observed to have lost weight. The pandemic affected too the delivery and availment of nutrition and related services including OPT plus, deworming, supplementary feeding, and vitamin A supplements. People suffered from food insecurity due to disruptions in food supply chains, loss of income and livelihoods, a widening of inequality, disruptions to social protection programs, altered food environments, and uneven food prices. The lockdowns resulted to stress eating for some often consuming foods that are high in fats, sugars, and salt and less of fresh foods like fruits and vegetables due to the limited access to grocery stores and wet markets. The positive effect is that nutrition service providers found ways of delivering nutrition and related services in innovative manner. Some people also preferred to eat healthier to develop better resistance against infections.

The Nutrition Month campaign thus, promotes the call for scaled-up nutrition interventions with accompanying investments from government and other stakeholders. Improved nutrition will impact on people’s ability to bounce back after stresses and shocks which the Philippines is most prone to compared to other countries. The campaign also calls for integration of nutrition in resilience-building and pandemic recovery efforts so that future disasters and emergencies will not result to even higher rates of malnutrition. Even before the pandemic, the Philippines was already suffering from high levels of child stunting, wasting and micronutrient deficiencies.

To highlight this call to action, the kick-off event included the Nutrition and resilience: Up close and personal – a fireside chat. It featured several nutrition partners from remarkable local government units and non-government organizations who have created social impact through the nutrition interventions that promoted food and nutrition security during the pandemic. Featured in the fireside chat are the Provincial Nutrition Committee of Quirino chaired by Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP) President and Governor Dakila Carlo “Dax” Cua, Municipal Nutrition Action Officer of Talavera, Nueva Ecija Mr. Arjhay Bernardo, and the City Nutrition Committee of Quezon City represented by Sustainable Development Affairs Unit Consultant Mr. Franics Ian Agatep, and from the non-government organizations, Ms. Leni Rose Renton of Rise Against Hunger PH and Dr. Martin Parreño, Health and Nutrition Specialist of UNICEF-Mindanao Field Office shared their stories and personal experience on how to build back better.

During the kick-off event, the NNC announced its month-long social media contests on Facebook and TikTok where exciting prizes await. And for the first time ever, the NNC will conduct an Online Nutrition Hackathon which brings together the most creative minds in the country to conceptualize digital solutions to help address malnutrition and hunger. These activities exemplify the Nutrition Month theme “sama-samang gawan ng solusyon”.

For more information on the campaign, contact the National Nutrition Council via email at
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and visit our website and Facebook page National Nutrition
Council (Official).