A popular scholar and nutritionist from Assam has been conferred with the "Food Hero Of India" title for her exceptional contribution to reducing child malnutrition in the country.
Dr Basanti Baroova, equipped with traditional food knowledge and expertise in nutrition education, was awarded the title by the Centre for Quality and Food Safety (CQFS) in Delhi. The ceremony was held virtually and was attended by officials from the Food and Agricultural Organization and Union Food Ministry.
Baroova pursued her B.Sc (Bachelor of Science) from the Assam Agricultural University. Later, she completed her master's in food and nutrition and also holds a Ph.D. on the same. She has been actively working with government bodies at the state and central level including the Ministry of Social Welfare, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), Indian Council of Agriculture Research (ICAR), Department of Agriculture, and several state governments, private sector firms and global agencies (including UNICEF, Save the Children and VHAI).
As per The Sentinel, she is the formulation of Assam Mix, the country's first commercial weaning mix produced from academic research, made from locally available foods of Assam. Besides authoring several books on diet and disease management, she also runs an NGO called Swadesh, which works towards the development of maternal and child nutrition.
Reports mention that the four other food technologists and farmers from across the country were also awarded the honour.