2016-2024

MORE NUTRITIOUS TORTILLAS TO FIGHT MALNUTRITION

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2016-2024

Semilla Nueva

Semilla Nueva works alongside farmers, scientists and the government to develop and expand the use of biofortified crops in Guatemala. Since 2016, we’ve been funding its work to test, advance and scale the consumption of biofortified corn as an effective way to improve the nutrition of Guatemalan people. It now aims to change 800,000 people’s diets by 2023, through partnerships, public policies and commercial sales.

CHALLENGE

Extensive work has gone into encouraging rural Guatemalan families to replace their staple corn tortillas with more nutritious food. However, corn remains the cheapest to buy, the easiest to grow and the foundation of their culture. Sadly, half of all children aged under five suffer from chronic malnutrition.

ACTION

Semilla Nueva produces and sells biofortified corn seeds, which have been conventionally bred to contain higher levels of quality protein and zinc. This aims to improve the nutrition of millions of Guatemalans.

Semilla Nueva adopts the standard agribusiness distribution model of Central America, selling seeds to distributors who then sell to agro-dealers, who in turn sell to farmers. This model is the most effective and scalable way of reaching small maize farmers in Guatemala.

At policy level, Semilla Nueva is also working with the Guatemalan government to provide seed companies with a small incentive to sell biofortified seeds at reduced prices to farmers.

Semilla Nueva plans to reach 31,200 farmers with biofortified corn seeds by the end of 2023, resulting in over 800,000 people eating more nutritious corn.

IMPACT

Semilla Nueva reached 9,936 farmers in just one year, and in 2021 2% of all maize seeds sold in Guatemala came from Semilla Nueva’s biofortified seeds.

9,936

FARMERS REACHED

with bio-fortified seeds in 2020

2
%

OF MAIZE SEEDS SOLD IN GUATEMALA IN 2021

came from Semilla Nueva’s biofortified seeds

25,000
MT

OF NUTRITIOUS MAIZE

produced between 2019 and 2021, enough to feed nearly 300,000 people for a full year

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

Slideshow-Semilla-Nueva-More-nutritious-tortillas-05.jpg

© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

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© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

Photo credits: Header © Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

Challenge: © Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello