The Seventh Biennial Nutritional Epidemiology Conference (ANEC VII) of the African Nutrition Society was held in Marrakesh, Morocco from 9th to 14th October 2016 at the Palm Plaza Hotel. Discussions and debates treated the theme: Nutrition Dynamics in Africa: Opportunities and challenges for meeting the Sustainable Development Goals.
The participants of the conference declare:
- We note that the scientific evidence, advanced technologies and innovative approaches reported at
the Conference have contributed significantly towards advancing the nutrition agenda in Africa and
accelerating the way forward.
- We acknowledge that the multiplicity of languages used by African scientists in Africa constitute a serious obstacle to access, exchange and communication of scientific knowledge.
- We recognise the importance of evidence-based policy making and programming and of bridging the gap between researchers and decision makers for increased uptake of research outcomes.
- We acknowledge the critical importance of the application of rigour in the collection and of noting
anthropometric survey data.
- We acknowledge the multiple causes and factors impacting on nutrition, dietary patterns and food systems and call for institutionalised inter-sectoral coordination and collaboration, giving special attention to actions addressing nutrition-sensitive agriculture and climate change.
- We recognise the pressing need for updating food composition databases and completing an inventory of Africa’s indigenous food resources that constitute a necessary basis for informed food and nutrition security planning.
- We note the results achieved by the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) initiative in Africa.
- We note the spread of obesity and diet-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs) on the Continent and it is aspired that the important work reported in this area will bear results.
- We acknowledge the increase in the prevalence of diet-related cancer in Africa and support efforts
made to address the issue.
- We explored relationships with the food industry that are mutually beneficial.
- We call for wider exchange of knowledge and experience gained from application of the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) initiative.
- We call on research and development partners to actively facilitate scientific communication across the Continent by providing all appropriate resources.
- We call for capacity development for more effective and sustainable nutrition education and communication programmes that appreciate the value of applying the positive deviance approach in resource-poor environments.
- We call for including a sustainable dimension in the planning of community-based nutrition programmes.
- We call for more attention to the emerging problems related to ageing.
We therefore resolve, on this the 13th Day of October 2016, to promote and work together across sectors to operationalize the Decade for Action on Nutrition; to work together to achieve the Sustainable Developing Goals and the Agenda 2063: The Africa We Want.