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Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan joins WFP for launch of "ancestral knowledge, natural flavors" initiative in Bolivia

LA PAZ - In the presence of Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today launched the "Ancestral Knowledge, Natural Flavors" initiative in Bolivia. It is inspired by the deep cultural roots and biodiversity of the country’s food heritage and gastronomy, with the aim of strengthening food security, sovereignty, and resilience to the climate crisis for indigenous and rural communities.

The initiative aims to promote the production and consumption of ancestral ingredients to improve the nutrition of Bolivians, promote social cooking, and strengthen the resilience and food security of the population.

Women play a key role as agents of change and guardians of food security in this initiative. During her visit to Bolivia, Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan, who serves as a special advisor to WFP on Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition, amplified the voices of women representing indigenous peoples and nations, who emphasize the importance of the connection between culture, food, and health.

"I have witnessed first-hand the challenges faced by communities, such as those in the indigenous Uru nation, due to climate change," said Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan after visiting communities in Vilañeque and Llapallapani, where WFP is implementing programmes to mitigate the impact of climate events.

"Assisting women in these communities to access markets and build resilience contributes to the nutrition of their children and the well-being of the community as a whole," she commented.

"Good nutrition is the driving force behind good health, and the revival of ancestral knowledge in the vast cultural diversity that Bolivia possesses is invaluable," said Alejandro Lopéz-Chicheri, WFP Country Director, who also noted that there are collaborations between ministries, academia, non-governmental organizations, the private sector, social cooking movements, restaurants, museums, and all those who are concerned about the daily nutrition of Bolivians.

The "Ancestral Knowledge, Natural Flavors" initiative consists of nine action areas:

  • Protection of knowledge and flavours through training,
  • Development of a strategy to prevent malnutrition by 2030,
  • Reduction of food waste,
  • Creation of a digital bank or academic-scientific repository on food systems and Bolivian agrobiodiversity,
  • Development of a mobile application to connect indigenous women with markets, gastronomic routes, and agrobiodiversity,
  • Traditional food courses,
  • Dissemination of knowledge and flavours with Bolivian chefs at international events and platforms,
  • Certification of knowledge, products, and foods with Bolivian identity, and
  • Photographic and interactive exhibition.

In partnership with the Simón I. Patiño University Foundation, WFP will advance in three out of the nine action areas of the initiative, promoting local cooks, researchers, chefs, and children, enabling the deepening of knowledge and the dissemination of Bolivia's gastronomic wealth.

"Having found synergies with WFP Bolivia through the ‘Ancestral Knowledge, Natural Flavors’ initiative, makes the foundation very pleased to incorporate, both in its physical structure and strategic planning, actions that align with the main pillars of education and culture, paediatric health, and agroecology," highlighted Agustín Iturricha, Administrative Director of the Simón I. Patiño University Foundation.



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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.


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Divha Gantier, WFP/ Bolivia,,
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