T-MARC Tanzania supports the government of Tanzania in its goal of reducing underweight, stunting, and maternal and childhood anaemia. These conditions are caused by under- and malnutrition due to insufficient food intake and deficiencies in diets, especially in the consumption and absorption of micronutrients such as vitamin A, iron, B12, zinc and folic acid.
Vitamin A deficiency is a significant public health problem in Tanzania with studies showing that it mostly affects children and women of child bearing age. An estimated 35 percent of Tanzanian children grow up with vitamin A deficiency which leads to lowered immunity, frequent ill health and poor growth. Women of childbearing age are also at risk because of their increased need for the vitamin, both during pregnancy and during lactation. The prevalence of sub-clinical vitamin A deficiency in infants fed breast milk suggests that lactating women in Tanzania also have insufficient stores of vitamin A. The most obvious results of vitamin A deficiency is progressive damage to the eye, eventually leading to blindness.
T-MARC Tanzania sub-contracted with Hellen Keller International to assist in communication and implementation of the Marando Bora orange-fleshed sweet potato project in 13 districts in the Mwanza, Kagera and Mara regions. T-MARC has also partnered with industry and non-profit organisations to assist with the introduction of two micronutrient products, Nutributter® and Plumpy’nut®, for infants six to 24 months old. As part of this effort, T-MARC conducted an organoleptic study, to confirm taste preferences, and a usage study, to better understand adherence behaviours, and created a launch plan for the products that are expected in the market in the future.