Linking social protection, agriculture and food security and nutrition: diversifying production and diets


Coherent integration of services from social protection, agriculture and nutrition sectors can support greater impacts on improving nutrition outcomes for poor rural households, where rates of child stunting are often highest.

Poor rural households typically depend on their own agricultural production for both home-consumption and income generation to purchase other food and basic needs. Consequently, the consumption and production decisions of poor rural households are closely interlinked, and they face competing priorities on relatively scarce income. Siloed interventions often fail to address these complex needs. Bringing together social protection and agriculture interventions at the household level can support the advancement of food security and nutrition. An integrated approach simultaneously addresses the short-term, medium-term, and long-term barriers to nutrition, such as knowledge, affordability and accessibility of nutritious food and basic health and sanitation services, and sustainable income generation.

This panel webinar presented case studies of integrated nutrition-sensitive interventions from countries that are supporting vulnerable households to improve their food security and nutrition and reduce poverty. In each case, FAO complemented a pre-existing national cash transfer programme with provision to beneficiary households of specially tailored nutrition-sensitive and climate smart agriculture practices, inputs and assets and nutrition education. Guidance for implementing interventions linking social protection, agriculture and food security and nutrition–drawn from these case studies and compiled in a forthcoming compendium–were also presented.



Andrea L. S. Bulungu, Independent Consultant



Asel Myrzabekova, Gender and Rural Women's Empowerment Expert, FAO Kyrgyzstan

Marlen Tynaliev, National Project Coordinator, FAO Kyrgyzstan

Susanna Karapetyan, Social Protection Expert, FAO Armenia

Laxon Chinhengo, Programme Development Specialist Pro-Poor Agriculture and Social Protection, FAO Lesotho

Fatou Mbaye, Social Protection and Food Security Consultant, FAO Senegal

Sylvia Salama Gata, Coordinator of School feeding program, Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI), Rwanda



Jessica Owens, Social Protection Consultant, FAO



Nutrition and Social protection

Combined effects and synergies between agricultural and social protection interventions: What is the evidence so far? 

Strengthening coherence between agriculture and social protection to combat poverty and hunger in Africa: Framework for analysis and action

Synthesis of guiding principles on agriculture programming for nutrition