Nestlé has reaffirmed its target to reach 50 million children for micronutrient fortification by 2030 through its Goodness in Milk campaign to address under nutrition among them.
Announcing the campaign on June 1, which is celebrated as World Milk Day and dedicated to highlighting on micronutrient fortifications in children, the company said its activities will include further development of healthier products and offer advice for parents on nutrition.
The move by Nestlé is to relay emphasis on healthy living among children by highlighting the role and contribution of dairy farming and benefits of milk intake.
Recent research has shown that children and adults who are lactose intolerant can build tolerance over time by regularly introducing small amounts of milk, which can slowly change their intestinal bacteria, making lactose easier to digest.
‘’Milk is an essential and important part of a child’s diet for a better health and growth. Until and unless a child is lactose intolerant, milk must not be excluded from their daily diet.’’
Mrs. Freda Duplan, Managing Director, Nestle Ghana, made this known during a media workshop in Accra, June 1 to educate the media on the important role dairy milk plays in maintaining one’s health and particularly the well-being of children.
She said over the course of life, inadequate intake of nutrients, such as calcium, iron and protein lead to weakening one’s bones, particularly in women and children, increasing the risk of fractures later in life.
Adding, regular consumption of dairy products, particularly milk can also help prevent diseases such as osteoporosis.
According to the International Federation of Diary and Agriculture, (IFDA) the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) predicts that the rapid growth in population size will increase the demand in dairy products by at least 50 percent.
In that regard, the Managing Director said that as demand increases, responsible consumption of dairy products must become paramount.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) as cited by the International Dairy Federation indicated that obesity rates have doubled since 1980.
“It is therefore important to think of moderation and knowing the type of milk suitable to have at various stages of life,” she stressed.
Dr Nii Lante Amissah, a lecture at the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences at the University of Ghana, Legon, reiterated the importance of consuming reduced fat milk or filled milk.
He advised women of reproductive age, especially pregnant women to take in an adequate amount of nutrition.
“The brain and body development, of the first 1000 days of a child are absolutely essential towards their well nourishment and adverse effects could have long terms effects,” he concluded.
By Mawuli Y. Ahorlumegah