Cuba: Only Country in Latin America without Undernourished Children, UNICEF Confirms


September 21, 2011

The last report of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) entitled Progress for Children: A Report Card on Nutrition, established that there are 146 millions children under the age of five with serious problems of under nutrition. According to this report, 28 percent of these children live in Africa, 17 percent in the Middle East, 15 percent in Asia, 7 percent in Latin America and the Caribbean, 5 percent in Europe and 27 percent in developing countries.

Cuba, however, does not have those problems, being the only country in Latin America and the Caribbean that has eliminated children under nutrition. Cuba’s achievement is owed to the government efforts to reinforce the alimentation of the most vulnerable groups. Another UN organization, the Agriculture and Food Organization, has also acknowledged Cuba as the country that has made the most progress in the struggle against malnourishment in Latin America.

The Cuban State guarantees a food basic basket and promotes the benefits of breastfeeding among new mothers. Newborns are exclusively breastfed is until the fourth month and that is complemented with other foods until the sixth month. In addition, every child between the age of zero and seven years old are given a litre of milk every day. Other foods equally distributed among children are fruit compote, juices and vegetables.

All these efforts have placed Cuba among the top countries in the fulfilment of human development according to the United Nations.

And Cuba has attained all this despite the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States during the last 50 years.


About B.J. Murphy

I'm a young socialist and Transhumanist activist within the East Coast region, who writes for the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies (IEET), India Future Society, and Serious Wonder. I'm also the Social Media Manager for Serious Wonder, an Advisory Board Member for the Lifeboat Foundation, and a Co-Editor for Fight Back! News.

9 responses »

  1. Pingback: ‘Dictator’ label on Fidel Castro insults Cuba | Pinas.Net

  2. I don’t think this is really what the report says. The report covers how well countries are meeting the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs), including #1: eliminating extreme hunger, measured by looking at the % of children under 5 who are underweight. On this MDG, the report did not have enough information for Cuba to list anything on the table. It doesn’t say there is no hunger, just not enough information.

    Cuba does score high on many of the other MDGs where there was information listed (things like having skilled attendants at births, % of children in school, etc.)

    The report is here:

    • Actually, Sarah, the report you presented was published in September of 2010, not 2011. I could be wrong, and Granma had published this analysis on the report a year later, but I thought I’d just point out the obvious here and see what you think of it.

      Thank you though for your comment. Always welcomed!

  3. Pingback: ‘Dictator’ label on Fidel Castro insults Cuba

  4. I wanted to believe this. Unfortunately, the statements about no malnourishment just aren’t true.

    The latest UNICEF documents regarding child nutrition are from 2006. Cuba is officially listed as “on track” as of 2006, and has gone from 7% of children being malnourished as of the 2004 study, to only 4% being malnourished as of the 2006 study. This actual information can be viewed at

    Further reports from UNICEF don’t address malnourishment – for example, the most recent such report is from 2009 and addresses child protection (including child labor, child abuse, female genital mutilation, etc) exclusively. You can view these at

    The article linked to on Cuba’s GRANMA site as being the ‘Source’ does not talk about children or nutrition at all, but rather primarily addresses a commitment to fight global climate disruption. You also reference the UNICEF study data by name, but misrepresents the findings of that study and do not link to it.

    • Yes, I do believe you’re correct. Though, taking it down to just 4% is an incredible feat for the island of Cuba. We shouldn’t neglect this fact.

      I do appreciate the extra efforts in bringing this to light.

      Originally this article was published on Granma, but they appear to have replaced the URL for another article instead. I’m guessing because they then found out that it wasn’t exactly 0%. Not yet at least.

      Though, to go from 7% to 4% in a matter of 2 years, I believe they should be at 0% by now, given the rate of decrease. Your thoughts?

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