Dr Sania Nishtar chairs consultative workshop on a potential National Commercialization Policy

Special Assistant to PM Dr Sania Nishtar conducts a meeting on a potential national commercialization policy

Sania convenes policy discourse for prospective commercialization of specialized nutritious food under Ehsaas

Islamabad — With SAPM Dr Sania Nishtar in chair, Ehsaas convened a consultative meeting on, ‘Prospective Commercialization of the Specialized Nutritious Foods (SNFs) Policy’ with Ehsaas Nashonuma stakeholders. The meeting aimed to discuss the viability of the commercialization of SNF.

In the meeting, regulatory and fiscal hurdles were outlined and recommendations to manufacture and bring specialized nutritious food to the shelves of retail stores and pharmacies at affordable prices was discussed.

Nutrition is a multisectoral element of Ehsaas and commercialization of SNF is included in the Ehsaas strategy as Policy #65 ‘Specialized nutrition food made available for stunted and wasted children in a cost-effective manner.

“Commercialization of SNF is crucial. The cost of the diet study conducted in Pakistan indicates that a large portion (66%) of the population is not able to afford the cheapest possible nutritious diet. Ehsaas therefore, recognized the need for formulating a national commercialization policy to ensure easy and affordable access to affordable SNF”, commented Dr Nishtar while addressing the meeting.

“The SNF commercialization will utilize the 1,000 days window of opportunity and is clearly a major area for expansion to sustainably tackle the economic and social impact of malnutrition being faced by Pakistan”, she further added.

It was agreed that in the next meeting, the stakeholders will come up with a consolidated proposal featuring a comprehensive frame of reference, a business plan for the commercialization of SNF, fiscal and regulatory recommendations, details of industry players in the market and their apex association along with risks and benefits.

The meeting brought together stakeholders in Pakistan from federal and provincial governments, the World Food Programme and other international development partners, and the private sector to provide technical inputs for the SNF commercialization policy framework for Pakistan, including specific practical steps to bring SNF to all sectors of the market.

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