Tucked away in the shadows of the Himalaya Mountains, over 2,000 participants woke up early to raise awareness for protein consumption as part of a healthy diet. The 2021 event, organized by the Nepal Veterinary Association and sanctioned by the Nepal Athletic Association, was powered by the Right To Protein campaign — an ongoing U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) activity in South Asia dedicated to elevating the importance of protein consumption as part of a healthy diet.
The event was highlighted by the Vice President of Nepal, Mr. Nanda Bahudur Pun, handing out trophies and certificates to the award winners. One such winner, Santoshi Shrestha of Bhaktapur, set a national record — finishing the half marathon in a blistering pace of one hour, 14 minutes and 14 seconds.
The “Run for Protein” was an innovative approach to targeting Nepal’s health conscious and active lifestyle influencers to be champions for protein consumption in Nepalese diets. It marked a historic collaboration between the Nepal Athletic Association and the Nepal Veterinary Association to achieve a common goal of health advocacy.
As the event drew to a close, USSEC’s regional director, Kevin Roepke, was on hand to also help hand out awards. Advocating for nutrition security is a core pillar of the strategy for South Asia market development. USSEC believes by transforming the diets of developing nations, it can help be a catalyst for national development. According to a recent study, 43% of children in Nepal are suffering from protein energy malnutrition, contributing to 41% of children under the age of five being stunted.
US Soy sits at the nexus of global health and wellness. As the world endures the perils of the COVID-19 pandemic, focusing on nutritional security has never been more important. To that end, USSEC stands at the ready to engage with whatever partners it can to advance the cause of global protein consumption.