KARACHI – A land of agricultural abundance, food insecurity continues to be a major problem across Pakistan. Cargill and Rizq Trust came together with the joint goal of ending hunger in Pakistan by establishing a food bank network. A groundbreaking ceremony was held yesterday for the first Cargill Rizq Bank in Lyari, Karachi, one of Pakistan’s largest food insecure communities. The Rizq Cargill ecosystem will work to create a food-safe Lyari, reduce food waste and be able to serve around 200,000 meals a year in the community.
RizqBank will provide four key services to help tackle food insecurity and end hunger in slums across the country. To this RizqDaig, food distribution within the community, RizqRation, determination and delivery of monthly food supply to families without food security and establishing a community center, RizqBachao, collection of excess food, storage and distribution to low-income families, and Rizq Next Generation Program, youth from schools and universities zero waste and will support zero hunger activities. Once this model is established in Lyari, Karachi will be implemented in important places throughout the country through this partnership. This will serve as a plan for stakeholders in the food ecosystem to come together and create self-sufficient communities.
In the second phase, the program will proceed towards establishing RizqXchange, a collaboration that will mobilize resources through a RizqBanks network. RizqXchange is enabled by the cloud-food banking technology ShareRizq platform, which connects people who want to donate food with distributors who provide food to the beneficiaries in real time.
Advancing its corporate goal of nurturing communities in a safe, responsible and sustainable manner, Cargill has contributed to seed financing and will assist Rizq with technical advisory services to efficiently build and run food bank operations. Cargill employees will also volunteer at Cargill RizqBank. Rizq will manage the onsite deployment and operations of this innovative model. They will also provide the overall strategy for the distribution of Cargill RizqBank and Rizq Xchange as part of this initiative.
Nearly 100 million people in Pakistan continue to face food insecurity, which is around 50% of the total population. As a country rich in agricultural resources, it is unnecessary and unacceptable that hunger is so widespread. This initiative aligns with our global commitment to combat hunger and reduce the threat of malnutrition in the countries where we operate. “We are proud to be a partner with Rizqf or this initiative and to take this mission forward,” said Cargill Pakistan country president Imran Nasrullah.
“Pakistan is one of the richest breadbaskets in the world, but it continues to struggle to keep itself afloat. Despite the abundance of resources, the fact that hunger is so prevalent reveals the obvious problems in our food system and the reasons why such problems occur. Any determination to end hunger must not only be systematic, but more importantly, based on human values. “We are proud to have a partner like Cargill step in and assist us in our mission to create a hunger-free Pakistan,” said Qasim Javaid Khan, Co-Founder and CEO of Rizq Trust.