Key data for Zimbabwe

NCI17th HRCI33rd HANCI26th
HANCI Africa compares 45 countries for their performance on 22 indicators of political commitment to reduce hunger and undernutrition. All the countries compared in the index have high rates of hunger and undernutrition. The comparative approach of the index means that country scores are calculated in relation to the political commitment of the other countries in the index.
Existing rates of: Stunting: 27.60% Wasting: 3.30% Proportion of population underweight: 11.20% Source: Gov. of Zimbabwe (MICS, 2014)

Strong Performance

  • The National Nutrition Policy/Strategy identifies time bound nutrition targets and a multisectoral and multistakeholder policy coordination mechanism has been set up.
  • Policymakers in Zimbabwe benefit from regular nutrition surveys that are statistically representative at national level. The last survey was published in 2014.
  • The Government has fully enshrined the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes into domestic law.
  • The Government of Zimbabwe promotes complementary feeding practices.
  • In Zimbabwe 93.7% of women aged 15-49 were visited at least once during pregnancy by skilled health personnel in 2014.
  • In Zimbabwe, constitutional protection of the right to food is strong.

Areas for improvement

  • Spending on agriculture (9.51% of public spending in 2014) is close to, yet not fully meeting government commitments set out in the African Union’s Maputo Declaration (10% of public spending).
  • Zimbabwe’s spending in its health sector (8.5% of public spending in 2014) does not fully meet (15%) commitments set out in the Abuja Declaration.
  • Government of Zimbabwe has not ensured tenure security for rural populations. Land titling is weak and land markets do not function well.
  • Extension services are the preserve of government and poor farmers have no say in setting policy priorities. The agricultural research and extension system is not properly reaching out to poor farmers. There is no policy promoting gender equity in access to extension services.
  • In Zimbabwe, the law gives women and men equal economic rights and equal legal access to agricultural land. However, these laws are not effectively enforced and discriminatory practices against women continue, increasing their vulnerability to hunger and undernutrition.
  • Relative to other HANCI countries, Zimbabwe's medium/long term national development policy (Zimbabwe Medium Term Plan) places weak importance to nutrition.
  • Zimbabwe does not have a separate budget line for nutrition; this prevents transparency and accountability for spending.
  • The Government of Zimbabwe has only achieved two high doses of vitamin A supplementation for 32% of children in 2014.
  • Weak access to improved sanitation facilities (36.8% in 2015) obstructs better hunger and nutrition outcomes.
  • In Zimbabwe, constitutional protection of the right to social security is weak.
  • Social safety nets in Zimbabwe are basic and only cover few risks for a limited number of beneficiaries.

Hunger Reduction Commitment Index (HRCI)

Public Spending Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Public spending on agriculture as share of total public spending
Public spending on health as share of total public spending
Policies Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Access to land (security of tenure)
Access to agricultural research and extension services
Civil registration system — coverage of live births
Functioning of social protection systems
Laws Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Level of constitutional protection of the right to food
Equality of women’s access to agricultural land
In Law, not in Practice20141st
Equality of women’s economic rights
In Law, not in Practice20117th
Constitutional right to social security

Nutrition Commitment Index (NCI)

Public Spending Score Year NCI rank of 45
Separate budget for nutrition
Sectoral only201529th
Policies Score Year NCI rank of 45
Vitamin A supplementation coverage for children
Government promotes complementary feeding
Population with access to an improved water source
Population with access to improved sanitation
Health care visits for pregnant women
Nutrition features in national development policy
National Nutrition Policy/Strategy
Multisector and multistakeholder policy coordination
Time bound nutrition targets
National nutrition survey in last 3 years
Laws Score Year NCI rank of 45
Enshrine ICBMS in domestic law
Fully enshrined20161st