Malawi (Bunda College of Agriculture) Ood composition data user training: use of the malawi food composition table/database


The Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR) received financial support from USAID (the United States Agency for International Development) to implement a 5-year project entitled Leveraging Local Capacity to Strengthen Health Service Delivery – Human Resource for Health (HRH) # 3 – Nutrition 4 Health Activity in Malawi. Through the project, LUANAR aims to strengthen national capacity to accelerate effective responses to nutrition problems that affect the health of Malawians, which consequently stagnate national development. To achieve this, one of the activities is to develop a second version of the Malawi Food Composition Table and train users of the database and tables.

Food composition data is an essential tool for nutritionists, dietitians, food scientists and the industry. For example, it is used in monitoring adequacy of dietary intake; in linking diet to health and diseases such as diet-related non-communicable diseases; in planning and prescribing diets to various population groups or institutions; in developing and planning food and nutrition legislation, policies and programmes; and in promoting trade. Data on nutrient composition of foods are made available to the public through Food Composition Tables and more recently through food composition databases.


The aim of the Food Composition Data User Training is to build local capacity on how to use the 2019 Malawi Food Composition Table and database so that their benefits may trickle down to Malawian users and beneficiaries.


The training will cover the following key topics:

  1. Basic principles of food composition data
  2. Basic principles in developing a Food Composition Database
  3. Food description in the Food Composition Database
  4. Component identification and selection in the database
  5. Understanding and interpretating data values in a Food Composition Database and Table
  6. Practical experiences in using the Malawian Food Composition Database and Table
  7. How to participate in updating the database and tables

The Food Composition Data User Training is intended for a variety of professionals and consumers of food composition data, and users who wish to have a better understanding of how databases are developed and used, and their limitations. The course will also be of value to those teaching nutrition and nutritional aspects of food chemistry, as well as those interested in assessing or understanding the effects of diets on human health. Overall, individuals, groups, and institutions whose agenda include use of nutrient values of foods will find the training relevant to their existence.


Interested applicants must have the following attributes:

  1. Be fluent in written and spoken English.
  2. Hold the minimum of a diploma in nutrition, dietetics, epidemiology, food science and technology, agricultural sciences, and closely related disciplines.
  3. Must have taken at least one college-level course in food analysis and/or foods and their nutritive value and/or introductory nutrition.

Only 20 training spaces are available. The deadline for application is 9th December 2022. Successful applicants will be informed and wfoodill receive invitation letters after 13th December 2022.


20th December, 2022


Applicants should include the following in the application package. All documents should be converted to PDF.

  1. Application letter
  2. A motivational statement of no more than 300 words
  3. Copies of relevant certificates in line with the eligibility criteria

The course organizers may request applicants to provide additional information.


The application package should be emailed to the N4H Training Coordinator: , copying the Food Composition Data Assistant:

The closing date for receipt of applications is 12 noon on 9th December 2022.

Inquiries may be made by email to: Dalitso Chimwala –