Approaches and lessons learned for promoting dietary improvement in Pohnpei, Micronesia

  • Chapter Authors : Englberger, L.; Lorens, A.; Pretrick, M.; Raynor, B.; Currie, J.; Corsi, A.; Kaufer, L.; Naik, R.I.; Spegal, R.; Kuhnlein, H.V.

  • Authors : Thompson, B.; Amoroso, L.

  • Document type : Book section

  • Year of publication : 2011

  • Book title : Combating micronutrient deficiencies: food-based approaches

  • Publisher(s) : CABI

  • Place of publication : Wallingford (GBR)

  • ISBN : 978-1-84593-714-0

  • Pages : 224-253

  • Language(s) : English

  • Abstract : The island state of Pohnpei, Micronesia, has experienced much change in diet and lifestyle since the 1970s. Serious problems of micronutrient deficiencies and non-communicable disease such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer have emerged, following the neglect of traditional local foods and the shift to rice and imported processed foods. An awareness campaign on the benefits of local food, especially carotenoid-rich bananas for nutrition, is the subject of this chapter. A community, inter-agency, participatory programme was implemented focused on raising awareness on island food production and consumption. Messages were shared on horticulture, cooking, food processing and conservation through mass media, posters, print materials, photography, national postal stamps, workshops, displays, youth clubs, farmers' fairs, competitions, e-mail and slogans: 'Go Yellow' and 'Let's Go Local'. Research was undertaken in food analysis, genebank collections and community case studies as part of a global health project. As yellow-fleshed carotenoid-rich foods (banana, taro, pandanus and breadfruit varieties) were iden-tified and promoted, banana and taro consumption increased as did the number of the varieties consumed. Carotenoid-rich banana varieties not previously marketed such as Karat, Utin Iap and Daiwang became popular. Foods ready for consumption using local banana and taro varieties appeared in the markets where these had not been sold previously. The awareness campaign stimulated great interest in Pohnpei and throughout the region with invitations to present at international meetings and ‘Go Local’ workshops outside Pohnpei. It was proclaimed as an awareness success and consideration should be given to apply-ing this approach to other Pacific Islands.


  • Open access : Yes

  • Document on publisher's site : open View article on publisher's site

  • Musalit document ID : IN110164

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