Energy biscuits being produced in Nangarhar
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): A bakery producing energy biscuits for undernourished Afghan schoolchildren has started functioning in eastern Nangarhar province.
The micronutrient-enriched biscuits produced at the factory are being distributed to children across the country by the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP), the factory’s head said.
Haji Farooq told Pajhwok Afghan News that the factory, the first of its kind in Afghanistan, had been manufacturing energy biscuits over the past six months for malnourished and mentally-weak children.
“We produce these biscuits for the WFP, which distributes them to children across the country free of cost,” Farooq said, adding the energy biscuits would previously come from India. “But fortunately, these biscuits are now manufactured in Nangarhar.”
He said the biscuits contained 16 types of energy ingredients and were being produced under WFP observation. “We produce these biscuits for Afghanistan only and are trying to export our products to other countries in future,” he said.
More than 30 people worked at the factory and if expanded, more workers would be absorbed, Farooq said. The biscuits are being supplied to areas affected by violence and natural disasters, according to the factory head.
A worker at the factory, Wasim, told Pajhwok Afghan News he had been in Pakistan working at a brick kiln before finding a job in the factory. “Now as I work here, I am doing a service to my country and my salary is enough to support my family.”
Another worker, Khan Mohammad, said they worked for eight hours a day, producing tonnes of biscuits. He said the cookies were not available in open market and WFP was the only source distributing them across the country.
A resident of the Rodat district, Abu Rehan, said the biscuits were very beneficial for children suffering from metal weakness and malnutrition. He said the biscuits should be made available in the bazaar so that everyone could buy them for their children.
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