How private sector involvement is changing food aid

Food aid is growing more sophisticated in the types and qualities of offerings it provides, in part because partnerships with the private sector are introducing new knowledge and new products.

Stephan Tanda, a board member of Royal DSM, a Dutch life sciences, nutrition and materials company, sat down with Devex President and Editor-in-Chief Raj Kumar to discuss his company’s commitment to development work and the shifting food aid environment at the 2013 European Development Days in Brussels.

DSM recently announced an enzyme that can take wasted meat byproducts and turn them into useable forms of protein. This is one example of how the company feels it is helping address global food needs, Tanda said.

Other changes are also afoot. Tanda pointed to the response to Typhoon Haiyan, where instead of traditional grain deliveries, survivors were given high energy biscuits with micronutrients and micronutrient powder. It also marks the first time that the U.N. World Food Program raised more money from the private sector than government donors in response to a disaster.

“Development really is shifting and the private sector is more and more of a partner with governments and NGOs,” Tanda said.

Visit us at the 2013 European Development Days and watch out for more Devex coverage of news and views from Europe’s leading global development event of the year.

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About the author

  • Adva Saldinger

    Adva Saldinger is a Senior Reporter at Devex, where she covers the intersection of business and international development, as well as U.S. foreign aid policy. From partnerships to trade and social entrepreneurship to impact investing, Adva explores the role the private sector and private capital play in development. A journalist with more than 10 years of experience, she has worked at several newspapers in the U.S. and lived in both Ghana and South Africa.

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