Collaborating to Tackle Malnutrition in Children

The effects of the recent pandemic, scarcity of many raw ingredients and the rising cost of living, global concern over food insecurity and the risk of hunger has once again been brought to the forefront.

By Julian Cacchioli

Julian Cacchioli is Vice President of Corporate Affairs, EMEA & India at Herbalife Nutrition

03 Oct 2022

Sadly, malnutrition, an issue that’s been building for decades, has been further exacerbated by climate change and economic shocks both nationally and internationally. It’s clear that hunger is a global challenge that requires urgent action, brought home by the fact that 811 million people worldwide were considered undernourished in 2020 - a rise of 161 million on the previous year.  

Food insecurity means being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable and nutritious food. A massive one in four people globally (1.9 billion) are moderately or severely food insecure.


Whilst hunger refers to a personal, physical sensation of discomfort, food insecurity refers to an economic and social condition of limited or uncertain access to adequate food. Whilst hunger can be caused by food insecurity, the two terms are not interchangeable.

When a large section of society lacks good nutrition, this has an impact on the economic development of that country. Bear in mind that economies exist on every level – from national through to household. Whilst poverty drives hunger, it’s clear that hunger keeps a country in a cycle that perpetuates this poverty. When you have a nation that has been stunted at its basic level due to malnutrition, this is replicated in employment, growth, and power. Communities simply cannot flourish. 

Herbalife Nutrition is dedicated to helping eradicate food insecurity and world hunger.  Since 1980, we’ve been on a mission to improve nutritional habits around the world through our innovative nutrition products, such as our meal replacement shakes, and through the support and coaching our independent distributors give their customers to help them reach their lifestyle and wellness goals.

Last year, HNF donated €4.87 million to promote good nutrition and active lifestyles and supported more than 216,000 children in 57 countries.

Another way we further our mission is through the Herbalife Nutrition Foundation (HNF) - a global, non-profit foundation devoted to improving the lives of children and families around the world.  We do this by supporting community-based charity partners (Casa Herbalife programs) to bring good nutrition and nutrition education into their local communities.  The HNF and its essential work complements our broader Nutrition for Zero Hunger strategy, which aims to support the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal of eradicating world hunger.  Last year, HNF donated €4.87 million to promote good nutrition and active lifestyles and supported more than 216,000 children in 57 countries.

As we seek to help fight food insecurity, the Herbalife Nutrition Foundation has also begun working with charitable foundation, The Power of Nutrition and the World Bank to tackle malnutrition.  Our new two-year partnership will focus on a stunting reduction programme in Rwanda – a condition that affects 149 million children around the world and 33% of children under the age of five in Rwanda - significantly limiting their physical and mental development.  If a nation has an entire generation that’s impacted both physically and mentally by poor nutrition, the economy is also stunted. Furthermore, a child’s education is inevitably impacted, creating a domino effect on entering the workforce and beyond, creating a negative cycle that causes economic growth to stall.