Food Security and Nutrition Network

Utilizing Soybeans for Nutrition and Income in Afghanistan

Event Details
Monday, February 27, 2017 -
3:30pm to 5:00pm
Save the Children, 899 N. Capitol St. NE, Washington, DC & Online

USAID’s Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Strategy notes that “nutrition-specific interventions alone will not eliminate under-nutrition; however, in combination with nutrition-sensitive interventions, there is enormous potential to enhance the effectiveness of nutrition investments worldwide." Nutrition-sensitive agricultural interventions are those that address the underlying determinants of malnutrition and incorporate specific nutrition goals and actions, such as improving the availability and access to nutrient-rich food or increasing income for expenditure on nutrient-rich food.

Nutrition & Education International Foundation (NEI) understands well the importance of, and potential for, nutrition-sensitive agriculture investments to improving nutrition. NEI has been active in Afghanistan for the past 13 years, working all along the soybean value chain, including with seed producers, farmers, processors, and wholesalers. Additionally, through NEI's soybean cultivation, home poultry business development, and youth club programs, women and girls are empowered to contribute to the health and economy of their families and communities while developing skills that can benefit them in their own lives. Join The TOPS Program for a presentation and discussion with NEI’s President and CEO, Steven Kwon, and Director of Programs and Operations, Sonia Kwon, to learn about their nutrition-sensitive approach to value chain development, their successes and challenges, and opportunities going forward. 

Please register to attend this event here.

This event is a follow-on event from the October Nutrition-Sensitive Agricultural Value Chains event held in Washington, DC in collaboration with SPRING.

For questions or concerns, please contact Abby Love, Agriculture Officer for The TOPS Program, at



Steven Kwon is the President and CEO of NEI and received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Ohio State University and holds 13 U.S. patents. He founded NEI in 2003 after visiting Afghanistan as a guest lecturer and was asked to develop a nutrition intervention. As a specialist in medical nutrition, he believed soybeans could prevent protein-energy malnutrition while improving the economy through sustainable soybean value chain development.

After successful test trials, Steven discovered soybeans could grow throughout Afghanistan. He then took an early retirement after 30 years in the private sector. Steven concluded his 61st trip to Afghanistan in February.   

Sonia Kwon is the Director of Programs and Operations at NEI and is responsible for overseeing program management and organizational development for the United States, South Korea, and Afghanistan offices. She works out of the U.S. Headquarters office in Pasadena, CA and has been traveling to Afghanistan since 2007.

Sonia earned her MPH at Boston University's School of Public Health and also holds a BS in Community and Regional Development from University of California, Davis. Before joining NEI, Sonia worked for the City of Los Angeles for the Councilmember of the Fifth District as Field Deputy for the Hollywood Hills.