USDA Provides Biscuits for 130,000 School Children in Gaibandah

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DHAKA/GAIBANDHA, JUNE 10, 2015 – U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh Marcia Bernicat visited a United Nations World Food Program (WFP) school feeding program at Kanchipara Government Primary School in Gaibandha district.  The program is supported by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition program.  Christa Räder, WFP Bangladesh Representative, accompanied the U.S. Ambassador.

In March 2015, the WFP received a shipment of 9,740 metric tons of soft white wheat from the USDA McGovern-Dole program.  The wheat will be used to produce nutritious biscuits for approximately 130,000 pre-primary and primary school children in Gaibandha.  For the next three years, these children will receive vitamin- and mineral-enriched biscuits every day at school.  All these biscuits are produced in Bangladesh.

This contribution is a continuation of USDA’s long-standing support to Bangladesh’s school feeding program, which improves enrollment and attendance by alleviating short term hunger, helping children to concentrate better on their lessons.  Over the past decade, the USDA McGovern-Dole program has partnered with the WFP to provide a daily snack to approximately 350,000 school children in Bangladesh.  “A daily healthy packet of biscuits at school is an effective way to provide students with crucial vitamins and minerals that they might otherwise lack in their diet,” WFP Bangladesh Representative Christa Rader said.

In April 2014, the USDA McGovern-Dole Program awarded $26 million to the WFP. The WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience.  Each year, the WFP assists some 80 million people in around 75 countries

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