Prof. Judith Kimiywe of the department of Food Nutrition and Dietetics has been awarded a grant of Euro 279,926 by the Flemish Interuniversity Council (VLIR) to carry out a collaborative research titled Insects for Nutrition and Health: Development and Evaluation of Insect-based Complementary Foods for Children in Kenya. The project which is being undertaken in collaboration with Ghent University in Belgium and University of Nairobi aims to strengthen research and education capacity as a means of generating and exchanging knowledge and contributing to the fight against poverty. This project seeks to address the issues surrounding undernutrition and sustainability of protein diets and possible avenues to explore edible insects as an alternative strategy to attaining nutrition. Additionally, the project will also seek to augment the idea of insect nutrition by researching on nutritional values, safety and socio economic issues surrounding insect nutrition. These complementary foods are to be developed using palatable insect species combined with germinated cereals, vegetables, root tubers and fruits. Thereafter, the nutritional value and microbiological safety of insect based food will then be determined, this will then inform the effectiveness of insect based complementary foods together with its acceptance and economic potential. The project is slated to run for 5 years and will support one PhD and 8 Masters students in their research work.
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