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Two scientists in a wheat field taking measurements with handheld equipment
Photo Credit: Daljit Singh/Feed the Future

Building on examples in the Nutrition-Sensitive Agriculture Design Guide, USAID Advancing Nutrition developed a list of illustrative nutrition-sensitive agriculture behaviors to support users of the guide and other nutrition-sensitive agriculture practitioners to take the first key step in achieving change: defining nutrition-sensitive behavioral outcomes.
The illustrative list features behaviors in three key food systems categories–food supply, food environment, and food and water utilization. The behaviors’ impact on nutrition is displayed through four key dimensions, including–

  • affordability of nutrient-rich foods
  • improved nutritional diet quality
  • increased food safety
  • local availability. 

The behaviors are nutrition-sensitive by the nature of the behavior or intentional application, helping to demonstrate how and where to impact nutrition. For example, “retailers sell improved agricultural inputs” is a common outcome of efforts supporting the food environment. To make this behavior nutrition-sensitive, retailers would need to sell quality seeds and fertilizer to farmers who produce fruits and vegetables or raise animals for home consumption or local markets. Who purchases and consumes nutritious food is just as important as the inputs, such as seeds and fertilizers, sold.

Program planners, managers, and implementers can use the list of behaviors to spark discussion and ideas. It can help teams define context-specific nutrition-sensitive agriculture behaviors during program design, and  check whether their priority behavioral outcomes could be more nutrition-sensitive, or adjust outcomes during a learning and adaptation process for greater impact.


Proper care for a child—including all components of nurturing care—plays an integral role in shaping children’s health, nutrition, and development.