* Sri Lanka promotes Divi Neguma programme to improve nutrition for people

July 12, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government, focused on promoting the recently launched Divi Neguma Programme to improve the nutrition level of the people, has sought media help to educate the country’s public on government programs and also to counter politically motivated misinformation campaigns.

Addressing the media personnel and officials of the Department of Government Information at its Auditorium today,the Economic Development Minister, Basil Rajapaksa explained that improving family nutrition is a main objective of the Divi Neguma Programme.

Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa launched the Divi Neguma programme in March this year to establish one million domestic economic units that promote domestic agriculture projects to make the households self-sufficient.

The programme under the theme “A Self Reliant Household -A wonderful Motherland” is aimed at enhancing agriculture and development of the economy by uplifting the individual households to be self-sufficient.

With this programme the government expects the households to grow their own fruits and vegetables and add more fresh vegetables and fruits into their diet and increase consumption of milk, eggs and other animal products.

According to Minister Rajapaksa the domestic program also aims to reduce the cost of living of households.

The Minister pointed out that, according to the statistics available vegetable consumption among people is less than 40 percent while fruits consumption is less than 35 percent and egg consumption is less than 55%.

Although the people’s income has increased and they have money there is no improvement in their nutrition, the Minister noted.

The Divi Neguma program, launched to encourage the people to grow food items at household level for their consumption using their own labour and other resources, will save them money spent on purchasing vegetables, fruits and animal products.

Minister Rajapaksa urged the media to support the program to improve the nutrition levels of the people in the country by creating awareness among public on the need to improve family nutrition.

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