National Policy on Food and Nutrition Security 2011-2021

General information

This policy was created in order to advance the social protection status of the population and ensure the right to food and adequate nutrition. It is the instrument created in order to achieve a national system for food and nutrition security that provides guidance and direction to the organization's work and the following allocation of resources, as well as the integration and cohesion of the different social actors. The five main areas of action are: availability, access, consumption, biological utilization and inter institutional strengthening.

Country Costa Rica
Type Polìtica
Date 2011 - 2020
Responsible institution

Ministerio de Salud

Related institutions

Secretaría de la Política Nacional de Alimentación y Nutrición (SEPAN)



  1. Promote actions that guarantee the right to food for the general population and especially for the most vulnerable people and groups.
  2. Respect cultural identity, nutritional needs according to the life cycle and diversity in the forms of production, consumption and agricultural commercialization, strengthening local markets, without interrupting international food trade, favoring domestic production of basic grains, fruits and vegetables.
  3. Promote equality between men and women, providing equal access to productive resources, services and opportunities in order to take on responsibilities and roles within food and nutrition security.
  4. Transforming the focus of public and social policies, in order to turn people from being passive, vulnerable and requiring assistance into individuals which are rights holders.

Intervention areas

  • Food availability
    1. Food production (national, regional, local).
    2. Commercialization.
    3. Monitoring and Information System, Program Evaluation.
  • Access to food
    1. Equity in access to food.
  • Food consumption
    1. Eating habits and healthy lifestyles.
  • Biological utilization
    1. Overweight and obesity.
    2. Malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies.
  • Inter institutional strengthening
    1. Equity in access to food


  • Food availability
    1. Promotion of food production with quality and safety for the population.
    2. Production process adapted to climate change.
    3. Promotion of domestic production for the availability of food with an emphasis on basic grains, vegetables and fruits in a sustainable, secure and competitive manner.
    4. Promotion of agricultural and rural development considering international norms and rules of trade and health.
    5. Advocacy in order to improve basic conditions for the efficient and effective commercialization of food production.
    6. Development of marketing strategies for the commercialization of domestic production.
    7. Promotion of alternative commercialization systems for food.
    8. Integrated information system for the availability of indicators in regards to domestic food production.
    9. Promotion of market surveillance for food products.
  • Access to food
    1. Improving access to food with quality and safety for vulnerable groups.
    2. Development of strategic actions to improve access to quality food in an efficient manner for vulnerable groups (networks of care).
    3. Improving the average family income in these vulnerable groups.
  • Food consumption
    1. Strengthening control and regulation in food advertising with the participation of different stakeholders.
    2. Promote healthy lifestyles and habits in order to improve health and nutrition of the population, considering the recommended national and international guidelines.
    3. Improving food handling practices.
    4. Strengthening food fortification programs through incorporation of micronutrients.
  • Biological utilization
    1. Strengthening the comprehensive care for people who are overweight and obese, at an inter institutional and inter sectorial level.
    2. Strengthening the comprehensive care of people with malnutrition at an inter institutional level.
    3. Strengthening the comprehensive care of people with micronutrient deficiency at an inter institutional and inter sectoral level, for all age groups of the population by geographic area, gender, socio-economic stratum and ethnicity.
  • Strengthening inter institutional networks
    1. Promote coordinated projects within the most vulnerable areas, enable their financing in order to promote human development.
    2. Promote FSN at a political institutional level and among civil society.
    3. Strengthen inter institutional and inter sectoral coordination.
    4. Support the creation of a system for monitoring food security and nutrition.
    5. Create, within the system for health monitoring within the Ministry of Health, a nutritional surveillance subsystem.
Target population

The general population and, especially, for the most vulnerable people and groups.