Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)- The U.S. Government through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will be providing $51.3 million in food assistance to Bangladesh in fiscal year 2011.  

The awards, which include transportation and freight costs, will be implemented under the Food for Progress and McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition programs, a US embassy press statement said in Dhaka on Thursday.
In Bangladesh, Food for Progress (FFP) will provide benefits valued at $21.8 million to 424,800 people in partnership with the Small Enterprise Assistance Funds (SEAF) and Winrock International.  The McGovern-Dole award will provide benefits valued at $30 million to 350,000 children through the World Food Program (WFP).

Announcing the awards, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said: “These two international food assistance programs support global food security and sustainable agriculture production in food-insecure nations, contributing significantly to the President’s Feed the Future Initiative. But our efforts to support global food security are not just important to the many people around the world who do not have access to nutritious and safe food; they are also critically important to the sustainable economic growth of these nations, and the economic prosperity and national security of our own country.”

Food for progress projects are chosen based on their agricultural focus, program impact, proposal quality, commodity management, the implementing organization’s capability and experience, and program alignment with host government and U.S. government country strategy plans.

McGovern-Dole participants either use or sell the donated U.S. commodities in recipient countries to help support education, child development, and food security in low-income, food deficit countries that are committed to universal education.

BBN/SSR/AD-19May11-6:21 pm (BST)