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On 22 December 2010, the Republic of Zambia joined the SUN Movement with a letter of commitment from the Minister of Health. At the time, Zambia had established the National Food and Nutrition Commission as the convening body to coordinate action on nutrition. The National Food and Nutrition Strategic Plan (2011 – 2015) had been developed by the commission with participation from multiple sectors and with support from development partners who were participating in the Nutrition Cooperating Partners’ Group.


Bringing people together
69% 2016

Bringing people together

Coherent policy and legal framework
58% 2016

Coherent policy and legal framework

Aligning programs around a Common Results Framework
63% 2016

Aligning programs around a Common Results Framework

Financial tracking and resource mobilization
54% 2016

Financial tracking and resource mobilization

61% 2016


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Nutrition situation


Under Five Stunting


Low Birth Weight


0-5 Months Exclusive Breastfeeding


Under Five Wasting


Under Five Overweight


Woman Anaemia 15-49 years


Adult Blood Glucose (Diabetes)


Adult Overweight


Adult Obesity

Strategic objectives

In Zambia, the national Multi-Stakeholder Platform has been strengthened, with the designation of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health as chair by the Special Committee of Permanent Secretaries in November 2015. The District Nutrition Coordinating Committees (DNCC) are being expanded to new districts beyond the current 14, and ad hoc Provincial Nutrition Coordinating Committees are also in place. To sustain these structures, there is need to formalise coordination structures at the subnational level and further internalise the multi-sectoral approach within ministries.

Last updated: December 2016

In Zambia, the National Food and Nutrition Commission (NFNC), under the Ministry of Health, is the national multi-stakeholder platform (MSP) which bring partners together for nutrition. Five line ministries have designated Focal Points for Nutrition to galvanise coordination.
A special Permanent Secretaries Committee has been appointed at the Cabinet level and is represented by nine Ministries (Health; Education; Agriculture and Livestock; Community Development, Mother and Child Health; Local Government and Housing; Gender and Child Development; Finance; and Youth and Sport). The Permanent Secretaries Committee convenes regularly to discuss multi-sectoral issues and nutrition is included within their remit. The mutli-stakeholder coordinating structure has been decentralised with the establishment of Provincial Nutrition Coordinating Committees (PNCCs) and Districts Nutrition Coordinating Committees (DNCCs). 14 Districts have also commenced the process of establishing Ward Nutrition Coordinating Committees (WNCCs).

The Nutrition Cooperating Partners (NCPs) Forum includes the United Nations system, and donors.

The civil society alliance, CSO-SUN, has inspired the organisation of parliamentarians through the formation of the All Party Parliamentary caucus on Food and Nutrition which brings together parliamentarians from different parties to have a coordinated voice for nutrition on the floor of the parliament. The recently established Business Network has over 22 member organisations. A new Academic Network has developed Terms of Reference and a Scope of Work towards development of the national research agenda.

Last updated: October 2015

A draft Food and Nutrition Bill has been developed after a series of consultations with stakeholders. It has been approved by the Cabinet and awaits approval by the Parliament. The current Food and Nutrition Policy was adopted in 2006 and is earmarked for review in 2016, alongside the National Food and Nutrition Strategic Plan 2011-2015. The active engagement of politicians, especially at parliamentary level has helped raise the profile of nutrition.

Last updated: December 2016

Plans are underway to revise the National Food and Nutrition Policy (NFNC) 2006. Stakeholders were engaged in a consultative process to review the NFNC Act of 1967 in order to broaden the law for a multi-sectoral response to the nutritional problems affecting various sub-populations.
Mechanisms are in place to enforce legislations such as the Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes, food fortification, and maternity protection.

Nutrition has been integrated into the Revised Sixth National Development Plan 2013-2016 (R-SNDP) by its mainstreaming across all sector specific implementation plans of the R-SNDP (in addition to Governance, HIV and AIDS, Gender, Disability and Environment and Disaster Risk Management). The R-SNDP is aimed at achieving the objectives set out in the Vision 2030 of becoming a “Prosperous middle-income country by 2030”.

Nutrition is mainstreamed in several sectoral policies including:

  • National Health Policy
  • National Health Strategic Plan
  • National Agricultural Policy
  • Agriculture Investment Plan, and
  • Social Protection Policy.

The Food and Drugs Act is under review and is expected to be re-established as the Food Safety Bill.

Last updated: October 2015

Components of the Common Results Framework are in place as per the First 1,000 Most Critical Days Programme and the National Food and Nutrition Strategic Plan 2011-2015. However, the accountability component is yet to be developed. A Joint Annual Review was undertaken in October 2015 by nutrition development partners and the Government, focusing on 14 districts although it needs to be expanded to all districts with nutritionspecific and nutrition-sensitive interventions. From the joint supportive visits carried out in November 2015 by multi-sectoral technical teams, good practices emerged that need to be documented.

Last updated: December 2016

The National Food and Nutrition Strategic Plan (NFNSP) 2011-2015 compliments the National Food and Nutrition Policy and is the common results framework (CRF) by which all supporting stakeholders are aligning behind. It includes eight operational strategies and three supportive strategic directions (SD) with a complete implementation matrix and a monitoring and evaluation framework. SD 1 “Prevention of Stunting in Children Under two Years of Age: First 1000 Most Critical Days” has a fullyfledged programme developed called the 1st 1000 Most Critical Days Programme (MCDP) to be implemented over a three year period. With the support and facilitation of the national level, provincial and the district nutrition multisectoral plans for the 1st 1000 MCDP have been developed. Two-year (2014-2016) DNCCs multi-sectoral nutrition plans have been costed based on the minimum package.
The minimum package of interventions under the 1st 1000 MCDP comprises of nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive that are also aligned to the results of the R-SNDP.

Zambia recognises that in order to enhance the capacity of the different implementing institutions, different capacity interventions have been developed and are in the process of being implemented. They will cover institutions at both national and subnational levels.

Last updated: October 2015

A budget tracking exercise tracking resource allocations for nutrition-specific and sensitive programmes was conducted in 2015-2016 with support from civil society. The findings, which included the need for institutionalising the reporting obligation, were shared with various key stakeholders, such as the Special Permanent Secretaries’ Committee on Nutrition. The SUN Donor Network has advocated for an increased number of donors to fund nutrition via the incountry SUN fund mechanism, resulting in more donors supporting SUN priority interventions.

Last updated: December 2016

The NFNSP has been partially costed for the minimum package and recommended scenarios to guide resource mobilisation for the First 1000 MCDP which is based on SD1 with technical support from the World Bank. More work is needed in the area of costing, especially related to nutrition-sensitive interventions which have limitations in cost assumptions. The NFNC along with key line Ministries and CSO-SUN have proposed to address this by costing district level activities for some nutritionsensitive interventions in the minimum package to help bridge the gap on the costing report of the World Bank. The pooled fund, SUN Fund Management Unit (SFMU), will support the NFNC to contract experts to undertake fiscal space analysis to identify the financial gap which will assist in the planning for resource mobilisation to scale up the programmes nationwide.
NCPs are planning to map the available funds among its members for nutrition on a yearly basis in order to help improve accountability of funds for nutrition from all stakeholders. In addition, the process of having independent audits has also been initiated by the SFMU.

Last updated: October 2015

SUN Government Focal Point

Robinah Mulenga-Kwofie
Executive Director National Food and Nutrition Commission

Donor Convenor

  • World Food Programme
  • with the support of the UK Department for
  • International Development