Quality protein maize: Improved nutrition and livelihoods for the poor - Kathmandu (Nepal) NARC*CIMMYT : 2002 - p. 3-6 - Printed
Maize is a major food for millions of the poor in Africa and Latin America. During the last few decades, CIMMYT scientists have developed a "quality protein maize" (QPM) that looks and tastes like normal maize, yields as much or more, and shows equal or superior disease and pest resistance. But QPM contains nearly twice the lysine and tryptophan-amino acids essential for protein synthesis in humans and monogastric animals-plus a generally more balanced amino acid content that greatly enhances its nutritive value. Research suggests that QPM can help reduce protein deficiencies, particularly in young children, in settings where maize dominates diets. In Colombia, Guatemala, and Peru, malnourished children have been restored to health on controlled diets using quality protein maize. Finally, repeated studies in several countries have shown that pigs or poultry raised on QPM-based feeds gain weight faster and produce more than animals raised on normal maize-based feeds. Since 1997, the Nippon Foundation has helped CIMMYT bring QPM within reach of millions of maize farmers and consumers in developing countries (Table 1). Through the Nippon-funded project "The Improvement and Promotion of Quality Protein Maize in Selected Developing Countries," CIMMYT and its partners have: .Developed stable, high-yielding, disease-resistant QPM hybrids and synthetic varieties for diverse production settings. .Tested QPM extensively on-farm and in demonstration trials. .Promoted QPM in countries where maize is a staple and where the probability of adoption and impact is high. .Enhanced QPM seed production and distribution. .Provided training on QPM research and dissemination. .Conducted trials on the use of QPM in animal feed.