Ziron Pulse is designed to extend and elaborate the capacity of the regional breeding program led by the University of Nairobi, addressing critical knowledge gaps to develop and disseminate micronutrient-dense bean varieties with proven nutritional/health benefits and also support the National Agricultural Research System (NARS). Consequently, this could facilitate the development of the UoN curriculum via, for example, courses on Biofortified Food Crops and their role in Africa. <!–more–> Twelve new biofortified bean varieties have formally been released in Kenya after independent validation by the regulatory authority (Kimani et al. 2016). These beans have marketable grain types that are comparable to popular commercial varieties and they have 80% more iron, 60% more zinc, a high yield potential (>50%), as well as tolerance to major bean diseases found in eastern Africa. However, the reproducible robustness and productivity across environments of these varieties have not been tested. Moreover, the large-scale multiplication and production of certified seed, promotion and dissemination of these varieties is critical to meaningful impacts on food and nutritional security in the region.
The objectives of the project are to: Specific objectives: Identify and map candidate genes associated with enhanced iron and zinc concentrations (and low phytate content) in genetically diverse bean germplasm from the Kenyan bean breeding germplasm collection Build on the gene characterization and develop molecular markers for iron and zinc biofortified bean development to accelerate new variety production: varieties that are culturally appropriate for the area and cooking preferences. Develop a comprehensive package of information ("Toolkit") using the social behaviour change communication for Nutrition approach incorporating "Theatre for nutrition behaviour change", campaigns, nutrition education group sessions and farmer open days, story animations, fliers, briefs. Apply the toolkit to enhance the dissemination, commercialisation and utilization of information and knowledge on biofortified (Fe and Zn) rich bean varieties in Kenya across the full supply and value chains, including consumer small holders and policymakers . Strengthen human and physical capacities and linkages among the actors along the bean value supply and value chains including mentoring and post-graduate training. Specific objectives: New smartphone application (e-data collection tool) developed and tested for functionality Smartphone application (e-tool) scaling-up Results of smartphone application (e-tool) disseminated and used for policy engagement.
To co-develop a tailored nutritional educational Toolkit to promote adoption of new varieties. This will be disseminated using the social behaviour change communication for Nutrition approach incorporating “Theatre for nutrition behaviour change”, campaigns, nutrition education group sessions and farmer open days, story animations, fliers, briefs etc. The Toolkit will include information on understanding the micronutrient-rich beans to address any fears and culturally held beliefs that the consumer/population hold when new knowledge is presented. In addition, it will also include nutrition sensitive marketing approaches to create demand for the variety within the value chains. To strengthen knowledge exchange, including essential skills training, mentoring and networking activities. Which is to hold an initial stakeholder engagement workshop to consult key stakeholders in the agricultural supply and value chain about the opportunities and barriers to new varieties. Information gathered will inform the dissemination and commercialisation plans. A final stakeholder workshop with field demonstrations will be used to promote the results of the project, engage with stakeholders to discuss opportunities for policy change and commercialisation, and to give all a real feel for the performance of the biofortified beans in field.
1. School Nutrition Comic Book Ensuring that children are positioned as agents of change, as they are strategic information disseminators, the comic book brings to life a story of how good nutrition can be achieved through access to nutrient dense food like biofortified beans which can address specific nutritional disorders among family members. The story is about two primary school going siblings whose your sibling sister is screened for moderate malnutrition and they are required to improve her health through nutritious food found in their home. They are in despair because they know the family does not have diverse foods to meet nutritional needs of the baby sister. And the other villagers are gossiping that its witchcraft that is making the baby sick, it is the last blow to take for these youngsters. To silence the gossip that the baby is bewitched, the two siblings embark on a long journey from their village to Nairobi to get ZIRON (Zinc and Iron) bean seed to plant, but their journey is full of adventure and learning, to their excitement, they get the seed, the beans for food and a whole lot recipes of how to prepare beans. They not only help their sister, but the whole village benefits from their adventure. 2. Desk Review of Biofortified legumes in Kenya: Understanding the consumption & utilization of biofortified beans - A review document This desk review was carried out to provide insights into the factors that necessitate adoption and utilisation of biofortified beans in Kenya. The information was necessary to support the development of nutrition tool kit which was used to engage various players within the bean value chain. The literature on the level and extent of acceptability and adoption of biofortified legumes in Kenya determined the type of nutrition information and approaches used in the kit, to influence bean seed choice as well beans for consumption. 3. Resource Manual This resource manual on bean utilization and consumption aimed to provide nutrition information to the farmers participating in ZIRON trials but specifically information on Zinc and Iron rich bean nutrition. The manual is custom developed for extension workers and other practitioners who promote good nutrition. The knowledge gained from this resource manual will enhance understanding of biofortification and influence the choice of the seed and beans for food. 4. Recipe Book This recipe booklet “Ziron-Pulse Promoting the Consumption and adoption of Beans using a variety of ways” had adopted bean recipes from various sources such as the Kenyan Food Recipes by FAO and Government of Kenya (GoK), local Chefs and households, and the Zambian bean recipe book. The recipes were tested through practical cookery sessions with farmers in three counties in Kenya and the most preferred ones were adopted and compiled. It is aimed at providing a practical guideline to bean preparation at household levels and for traders that sell food, for enhanced diet quality and improved nutrition and health. It is expected to help promote the consumption and adoption of beans among vulnerable population especially pregnant and lactating women and young children below the age of five years in Kenya. This is because, despite common bean’s high nutritive value in terms of energy, protein and micronutrient content, young children often do not get the full nutrition benefit from beans because they are unable to utilize the beans in the most common prepared form for consumption in households. Monotonous preparation of beans also limits consumption by pregnant women who are sensitive to food sensory characteristics such as smell and taste. 5. Formative Research Report This formative survey sought to find out the challenges and enablers for scaling up and adoption of Ziron beans in the community focusing on mothers/caregivers, traders, agricultural extension workers, and farmers. It also aimed to determine the gaps in knowledge about biofortified beans so that the knowledge gaps can be addressed in the Bean toolkit. 6. Commercialisation Awareness Campaign Commercialization awareness campaign aimed at wider dissemination of information on biofortified bean breed. The general public needed to understand more on ZIRON micronutrient-rich beans to address any fears and culturally held beliefs that the consumer/population hold when new knowledge is presented. In addition, this was in away, a nutrition sensitive marketing approach to create demand for the newly introduced bean variety within the bean value chains. The commercialisation campaign provided information and knowledge that will support population’s uptake and utilisation of ZIRON Beans.
Click on resource to download. Nutrition Information For Farmers Nutrition Information For Mothers and Caregivers Nutrition Information For Consumers/General Public Nutrition Information For Retailers, Traders Magic Beans Comic Book RecipeBooklet