UNDP, Savola Foods ink MoU to advance Egypt’s food security

Doaa A.Moneim , Wednesday 24 Aug 2022

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Egypt signed on Tuesday a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Saudi Savola Foods company in order to advance Egypt’s Vision 2030 and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the areas of climate change adaptation and food security.



Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat witnessed the signing.

The long-term partnership agreement encompasses pillars of mutual support, where UNDP Accelerator Lab in Egypt and the Regional Innovations Center of Savola Foods’ joint efforts will work on piloting innovative strategies in collaboration with national and international development agencies to help expand and improve sustainable and impactful practices in the food and agriculture sectors.

Under the MoU, the partners will seek to apply the SDG Impact Standards and globally recognised Impact Measurement and Management practices.

Savola Foods Innovations Center will also experiment with climate-resilient crops like millet, quinoa and sorghum, within the manufacturing of wheat-based products, complying with the government’s agricultural development strategy on combatting the impact of climate change.

“With food security quickly becoming a global challenge, international partnerships are needed to curb the impact of successive global crises, ensuring self-sufficiency and resilience. Today, the MoU signed between the UNDP and Egypt’s Savola Foods aims to accelerate our progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals, with a focus on food security through cooperation,” said Al-Mashat.

The minister also noted that this partnership will reflects the importance of private sector engagement in enhancing agricultural practices, particularly in light of climate change.

Al-Mashat asserted the government of Egypt’s commitment to working with development partners and the private sector in ensuring resilience and adaptation through innovative solutions, despite current global challenges.

“Egypt’s historical breadbasket, the Nile Delta has been classified as one of the world’s top three hotspots in terms of vulnerability to climate change. Adapting the agricultural sector to climate change is an especially high priority, and UNDP has been working closely with the government, experts and farmers to achieve this adaptation”, said UNDP Resident Representative in Egypt Alessandro Fracassetti.

He added that the private sector has a key role to play in achieving the SDGs, including enhancing food security and adapting to climate change.

“We hope that our partnership with Savola Foods will inspire other key players to invest in positive environmental and community impact and long-term resilience, and to look at all their business processes through the lens of the universal agenda 2030. It very much makes business sense, now and in the long run,” Fracassetti noted.

For his part, Savola Foods’ CEO Sameh Hassan explained that the company, which is leading in wheat-based products across the MENA region, will work with UNDP to bridge the gap that could exist in the future, as a result of declining wheat yields which are expected to decrease by around nine percent by 2030.

“Through the partnership, we will build a strategic approach to advise on a roadmap, upon which several activities are expected to kick off. On our end, Savola Foods will allocate key part of its R&D efforts and know-how whilst giving top priority to consumer insights in order to provide the end-users with a wide range of appealing & sustainable food commodities,” Hassan added.

Savola Foods’s market share is 35 percent of the Egyptian market and it is the biggest pasta exporter from Egypt to several countries in Africa and other Arab countries.

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