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Revolutionizing pharmaceutical R & D sector

Revolutionizing pharmaceutical R & D sector

India has thrown a right smack on International co-operation by sending vital medicines to many countries during the pandemic, which has led India’s pharmaceutical sector to boom as a source of employment and innovation and become a global healthcare leader provider in need. With a well- equipped and low-cost skilled workforce, India is playing a significant role as a global manufacturing hub. This makes the country be on a growth trajectory. From the past few years, world-class competence, advantageous market conditions, robust framework, pecuniary and non-pecuniary incentives, and a growing R & D ecosystem have made India one of the most remunerative pharmaceutical sectors globally. India has allured tremendous praise and acknowledgment across various countries to globally recognize its on-going and practical steps to export this vital drug. 

India’s significant advantage is:

  • Funding in big-scale manufacturing pharma product units and expanding the business.
  • Improving India’s ‘soft skills’ through technical knowledge and competence building and help to other developing and developed countries.
  • strengthening the research & development ecosystem and Fuelling pharmaceutical exports
  • Enhancing access to efficacy and good secondary/tertiary health services.

According to the IPA McKinsey Report, Indian Pharmaceutical industry is poised to increase its revenue from $38-40 Bn to $120-130 Bn by 2030, with a CAGR of 11-12%.

Source :IPA Mckinsey Report 2020

Therefore, India is increasingly known as the ‘pharmacy of the world,’ or ‘pharma hub,’ exporting its pharmaceutical products globally.

Advanced technologies used in Pharma R&D: 

Nanotechnology and Microarray are the new emerging technologies in the pharmaceutical R & D sector. Along with this pharmaceutical R & D sector make use of FAIR (Findability, Accessibility, Interoperability, and Reuse), AI-enabled digital platforms, research partnerships with academia and digital tech companies, AI for drug discovery, data principle, and blockchain technology, which is becoming a new level of sharing information and transparency to reduce many challenges faced by pharmaceutical industries. These advanced technologies have developed success rates and have minimized the time and cost of drug discovery.

 Path Ahead: 

Healthcare is taking centre stage due to pandemic onset, which is likely to remain at the public’s utmost priority even in the aftermath of COVID-19 worldwide. This is a tremendous opportunity for the domestic pharmaceutical players to play a leading role in global drug management by emerging as the global ‘medical superpower’ by providing medical expertise, essential drug treatment framework, and competency building to other nations with limited prospects. 

India being the strategic industry and with the advantage of both reach and scale, it is essential to make a collaborative effort with regulatory agencies and government to help build an excellent ecosystem that will help the industry to grow by 11-12%, which will make India continue to be the ‘World Pharmacy’ and soon be the larger producer worldwide.




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Green supplement sector-An untapped market

Green supplement sector-An untapped market

A significant number of vegan and plant-based spaces are increasing, owing to the endeavouring capital and the spirit of entrepreneurship in India; This is not an accord as even globally vegan food start-ups are taking centre stage, which has led many food start-ups to prop out and investors to open their ears and eyes to invest in green companies.

Changing mindset of people due to COVID-19: 

There is certainly a change in people’s eating habits globally, especially after the pandemic’s outbreak. They are very much concerned about what they are consuming and its effect on their immune system. In India, now people are opting for the vegan or plant-based diet(green). Because there is almost zero adulteration in plant-based supplement, making it more customer-centric, grabbing the consumer’s colossal attention, and changing their mindset. Everything that is healthcare-related is receiving a massive boost. The fact that three out of four Indians are lactose intolerant makes it ripe for veganism to spread. Milk has been medicine for decades, and ghee is used practically wherever possible. However, this is an older generation mindset and looks to be fading away with the upcoming generation, replacing the classic dairy milk with plant-based milk. India has been the youngest country globally, with almost half of its population under thirty. With rising incomes and more education, the new India is moving towards green supplements or plant-based supplements as they wake up to animal agriculture’s adverse impact on our environment, health, and the animals.

Opportunities for the green companies to grow: 

This new transformation has created an excellent opportunity for food companies, Food Business Operators (FBOs), and traders to plan their stint into the green or plant-based market. And even Forbes has mentioned various ideas to turn one’s business vegan. Also, many renowned personalities investing in green companies is increasing rapidly.

As per the Grand View Research report, the global green or plant-based market size was valued at $12.69 billion in 2018 and is poised to rise by 9.6 percent (CAGR) from 2019 to 2025. Also, in terms of India, the market captures around 10% of the Asia-Pacific plant protein market. In 2018 the market was evaluated as $374.1 million and by 2023 it has been forecasted to grow up to $565.1, registering at a CAGR of 8.6% during the period of forecast 2018 to 2023. Investors can chase start-ups that can demonstrate an ability to produce and market animal-free nutrition. In terms of the number of funding and start-ups, the diary plant alternatives sector is poised for maximum growth.  It is a matter of time till some Indian start-ups follow suit with significant success in the fast-growing plant and nut milk sector. As consumer demand turns up the volume on plant-based supplements, the green company has an excellent opportunity to explore in India.





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Digitalisation & Pharmaceutical World

Digitalisation & Pharmaceutical World

The pharmaceutical manufacturing industry is growing drastically due to the increasing demand for its service. Digitalization can embrace almost all spheres of pharma industry, especially manufacturing. Let us see how!

Five Paradigm Shifts in Pharmaceutical industry: 

A comprehensive approach is necessary because of five fundamental shifts in how the pharmaceutical industry will be shaped in the coming years. These five paradigm shifts are as follows: 

  1. Minimizing Variations: Pharmaceutical companies can run historical data on Chemistry, Manufacturing, and Control (CMC) by building an advanced analytical model to determine the impact of individual changes. Pharmaceutical companies can use modern and new technologies to understand better how input parameters such as operator training levels, raw materials options, and machine settings will affect the quality of products and outcomes. To eliminate testing and cut throughput times in half, companies can control over input parameters to regulators. This automatically boosts efficiencies, as most of the quality control and quality assurance tasks disappear. Also, by mapping outputs to inputs, companies can proactively optimize all inputs and thus reduce variations.
  2. Real-time data to map market trends: Internal and external indicators, big data, and machine learning algorithms can be leveraged by the industry stakeholders to forecast trends and automatically identify and mitigate risks such as quality issues, deviations, and machine failures, etc.
  3. Digital optimization: The real-time digital twin stimulation allows companies to steer the process presciently by assuming the effect of adding a new machine, changing the team allocation, or changing schedules. This can help the company optimize production parameters for a highly complex system, proactively and accurately, without risk. Companies can also build digital stimulation of production processes on individual machines, factories, labs, or the entire manufacturing network. This is a significant advancement in efficiency compared to the traditional approach of going through historical data manually to spot trends.

    Fig 1.1 Five Data Driven Paradigm Shifts in Pharmaceutical industry

  4. Automation through robotics: Digital robots can autonomously handle supply scheduling and planning measures, using self-learning algorithms to support decisions such as corrective and preventive actions (CAPA) or portfolio margin optimization. Such tools are emerging to improve knowledge work, automation, and administrative processes. Suppose there is any deviation in a product. In that case, natural language processing can be used, which can help to show where and what went wrong and compile it into a Pareto diagram or some other type of visualization. All these solutions can reduce the company’s time by 10% but by 90-100%.
  5. Reducing human errors: Human error is the biggest weakness in pharma production. Tasks done by humans are almost 92% accurate statistically. This does not comply with pharma expectations. Therefore, new digital systems that support operators in daily tasks highly repetitive have a massive increase in the pharma industry. These tools can let managers know if something is going wrong or is likely to go wrong.

Future prospect: Digital manufacturing in pharma is the industry’s new reality. Leading companies can develop a roadmap to implement and capture substantial gain in production capacity by 40% and reducing unit costs by 15%. The companies can embrace innovation and position themselves to compete in a future that will look very different from today.




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How AI Can Play a Role in Tackling the COVID-19 Pandemic?

How AI Can Play a Role in Tackling the COVID-19 Pandemic?

The global healthcare industry faced the most significant health challenge in 2020. To protect ourselves against the novel COVID-19 virus and lower the overall disruption many AI companies started to develop new tools to overcome this difficulty. Here are some keyways that prove how AI is essential in tackling COVID-19.

  • Containing the Spread:

AI can be harnessed in forecasting the spread of the virus by developing an early warning system. The one thing that AI excels in is analysing and uncovering patterns in vast data swathes. This is precisely what makes AI the perfect tool for modelling and tracking the distribution of the virus. Facebook gives an example of how this ability was utilized in practice; the AI works by sharing anonymized data about people’s movement through mapping software, which enabled Facebook to generate accurate population density estimates that offer a clear picture of when and where people were congregating. Hence, such tools are useful for tracking the virus’s spread and allocating medical resources more efficiently.

  • Diagnosing the Virus: 

First, to control the virus effectively, we need to know who has already overcome the infection, who has it, and who has never been infected. Hence, many companies tackled this challenge by launching the Coronavirus AI solution, which helps clinicians detect and monitor the virus. It even lowers the medical practitioners’ burden by allowing them to locate the virus on images of the patient’s lung, based on the data derived from the vital statistics. AI provides essential information for resource allocation by prioritizing the need for ventilators and respiratory supports in the Intensive care unit.

  • Drug Development: 

Never has mankind witnessed such a race for developing a vaccine against a pathogen or virus. Vaccine development can be a laborious and lengthy process, mainly due to the human immune system’s complexity and its variability among different groups and people. The pace of the discovery can be enhanced manifold by witnessing the power of AI. Entities have leveraged AI platforms, genomics, computing, system biology, and bioinformatics, as these technologies can anticipate where the disease will go next and identify drugs that will be effective against COVID-19.

Way Forward: 

Soon, AI will play a significant role in the pharma industry to explore the healthcare sector’s unmet medical needs. In collaboration with AI companies, many pharma companies can develop cloud-based AI platforms to accelerate their drug discovery programs. These platforms will look for patterns in data and use algorithms to make accurate predictions about the potential drug molecules based on computational structure analysis, drug target, and data from in-vivo cell line studies. Hence, it shows that AI has a massive Pharmaceutical industry application in the coming years.





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Therapeutic Food to Fight Malnutrition

Therapeutic Food to Fight Malnutrition

The developed and underdeveloped countries such as Asia, Africa, and South America face the leading challenges related to Food and Nutrition Insecurity and nutritionally related diseases. Food storage & Poor access to adequate health facilities have taken center stage among the global challenges, especially in the most developing and underdeveloped countries mentioned above. Malnutrition and Undernourishment are the two significant health-related growing issues in the world.

Malnutrition Prevalence in India: 

The significant public health problem in India is malnutrition among under-five children. This is reflected by the fact that underweight children’s prevalence is among the highest in the world in India. It is also observed that the bulk of malnutrition in India is a concentrated phenomenon that is, a relatively small number of districts, states, and villages comprise a large share of the malnutrition burden- only five states and 50% of towns account for about 80% of the malnutrition burden. Also, In India, the prevalence of Severe acute malnutrition (SAM) is 7.5%.

How COVID-19 has worsened the condition of malnutrition?

The pandemic outbreak has only worsened India’s problem of malnutrition. During the coronavirus pandemic in India, Tens of thousands of children slept on an empty stomach. India has taken small steps over the last few years to fight against malnutrition, resulting in a significant decline in the child mortality rate. If this progress were continued, India would have met its ‘sustainable Goal’ of reducing the mortality rate of under-five by 25% by 2030. However, the little progress too came to a halt as the lockdown forced millions of children to stay out of school. Anganwadis were also closed, which meant that thousands of children in rural areas could not get food under the Mid-Day meal program. This led to UNICEF’s conclusion that India is likely to witness an increase in malnutrition by at least 10%.

Ready-to-Use-Therapeutic Food (RUTF) as the Solution to Malnutrition:

Foods designed for specific health-related issues, usually to meet the nutritional requirement, are therapeutic food. The RUTF is a mixture of milk powder, powdered vitamins, minerals, vegetable oil, and peanut butter with the proper nutrients needed by an individual. This medicinal food’s primary purpose is to use it for emergency feeding of malnourished children or to supplement a person’s diet with special nutrition requirements, such as the elderly. RUTF does not require any special preparation before consumption, making it practical and ideal for cooking facilities and fuel limiting constraints.

Case Study: 

Severe acute malnutrition is reported to account for more than one million preventable child deaths. The reported mortality was as high as 20-30%. As per the WHO Diagnostic criteria for diagnosis, a cure rate of 75% with <10% mortality has been set as the minimum goal. Ready to use therapeutic food (RUTF) is used as a solution for managing SAM cases. The case study was carried out in Kerala, among 67 children with SAM admitted in SAT Hospital, Govt. Medical College showed that 33 (51.6%) achieved cure, 18 (28.1%) were not cured, 12 (14.1%) lost to follow up, and 4(6.25%) died, which concludes that the cure rate was less than the goal of 75%, but the mortality was <10%. 





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Importance of Sustainability in the Corporate

Importance of Sustainability in the Corporate

COVID-19 has disrupted many business processes and few have been changed in last ten months. Now, it is time to stabilise and ensure that new systems and SOPs work for improving business. 

Stability is one of the fulcrums and essential elements for sustainability.

To sustain in this environment, 4 pronged approach is essential:

Sustainability is important tool for the corporates for managing reputation & brands. It is extremely important to incorporate sustainability in wide range of a corporate like managing the internal operations, developing regulatory strategy, marketing of products & services as well as attracting & retaining talent. The reason companies incorporates sustainability strategies is basically to maintain and improve company’s reputation, strengthening positive competitiveness, leadership’s personal interest, meeting the expectations of distributors, retailers & others & helps in aligning with the business goals.

These engaged companies do more than others to communicate the programs that involve sustainability through various engagement activities like embedding sustainability data in communication with the investors. The companies should participate in sustainability rankings and/or indexes produced by financial-index companies information provides on socially responsible investing or media or PR firms. The companies should inculcate sustainability through its CSR activities. They can also publish a sustainability section in their corporate website for their external audiences.

Therefore, companies that proactively handle sustainability are far more likely to explore and uncover opportunities for value development. Communicating better with customers and other stakeholders may be a first step in achieving awareness and enhancing the effectiveness of sustainability activities. Companies where sustainability is a top item on the agenda of their CEOs are twice as likely as those to introduce sustainability into the management strategies of their firms. This indicates that senior management who wish to enjoy the advantages of implementing sustainability into the overall policies of their businesses must play an active role in the initiative.

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New Food Labelling Regulations Related to Packaged Food Products

New Food Labelling Regulations Related to Packaged Food Products

On August 23, 2006, India’s government passed the Food Safety and Standard Act or the FSS Act. The FSSAI, i.e., Food Safety and Standard Authority of India, was entrenched under this act. This act is meant to cover or carry out operations related to setting the standard of food articles. This crucial step changed the businesses way involved in food articles in India. The FSSAI standards are based on scientific research. They help regulate the storage, manufacture, sale, import-export, distribution and making all types of other food articles available to the general population.

The FSSAI published new food labelling regulations related to packaged food products, based on the recommendations of the expert group. 

What it is about?

The following provisions are described in the scientific document: 

  • Chapter 1: – Prescribes pre-packaged foods labelling requirements and displays essential information on-premises where food is processed, served, manufactured, and stored. Several definitions have been listed under the context otherwise requires.
  • Chapter 2: – covers the general requirement of labelling pre-packaged foods such as food name, list of ingredients, calculation of nutrients, and nutritional information. Declaration of name and complete address, lot/code/batch identification, Date marking, a declaration regarding food additives, retail sale price, FSSAI logo, and license no., Net quantity and consumer care details. Etc.
  • Chapter 3: – contains a display of information in the food service establishment of the Regulation.
  • Chapter 4: – has the non-retail container labelling requirements.
  • Chapter 5:- Of Regulation indicates the labelling of packaged food additives for retail sale. Mandatory labelling declaration for various food products has been set out in schedule 2.

When is it going to be implemented?

India’s Food safety standards Authority published a “Food Safety and Standards (labelling and display), Regulation 2020 gazette notification on December 14. 2020. The Regulation shall come into force from the date of their disclosure in the Official Gazette. All the Regulation provisions should comply with all the Food Business Operator after one year from their disclosure date except chapter-3 of this Regulation. Food Business Operator shall comply with this by January 1, 2022.

What are the concerns related to this?

Industry concerns: –

  • There has been a concern by the food industry giants regarding the bigger size fonts to be used in the principal display panels.
  • The industrial bodies have complained that it is not feasible for them to use expiration date similar to that of the pharmaceutical industry. They would like to stick to the ‘Best before date.’ for this purpose.
  • The guidelines dictate the menu cards calorific value to the cafe chains and restaurants with more than ten outlets.
  • Further, the guidelines mention that all the E-platform food and beverage sales should communicate the essential requirement to the consumers before the deal, which includes (batch date, best before date, expiry date, and packaging date).





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COVID-19 has changed the e-pharmacy market

Recently, two large mergers have been observed by Indian online pharmacy, which has not seen any substantial action for long due to the absence of proper regulations. 

 A majority stake in Chennai-based e-pharmacy Netmeds was picked up by Reliance Retail, while PharmEasy is integrating with Medlife. Drug distribution services on its website were also revealed by e-commerce firm Amazon. So the question is: has the Coronavirus pandemic outbreak affected the nation’s online pharmacy space? A study by The Indian Express highlighted that COVID-19 and a corresponding behavioural change in e-commerce have allowed or catalysed growth for online pharmacies, if not entirely. It affirmed, however, that the sector was still projected to rise sevenfold to $2.7 billion by 2023.

According to the study, this is partly attributed to the difficulties encountered by traditional pharmacies, giving their online equivalents more impetus. The study, citing experts, highlighted that e-pharmacies are expected to solve problems that conventional pharmacies might not be able to solve and a large-scale online pharmacy space is needed for this, which in turn requires tremendous investment or consolidation.

With over 8 lakh pharmacies and online set-ups, the pharmacy industry is fragmented in India. The study claimed that they both operate on three major business models, including the marketplace, franchise-led hybrid (offline/online) and inventory-led hybrid (offline/online).

However, because of no established regulations agreed by the government, many investments in the online space have been kept at bay until now. It should be remembered that, because e-pharmacies have not been restricted so far, brick and mortar chemists are vying for their operations. The proposed guidelines for e-pharmacies have been set in effect and are intended to describe, among other aspects, internet purchases, the definition of e-prescription and licensing for online businesses. It is also planned to propose how drugs can also be delivered, marketed, and stocked by e-pharmacies.

Therefore, E – pharmacies are bound to play a vital role in the future with the bulk of these patients who, without going to the clinic any time they need a prescription for their medications, will have a strong appetite for quick access to their therapeutics. Experts suggest that, owing to degrading environmental factors and unhealthy habits and diets of Indians, the figure is bound to show a multifold rise in coming years. With the growth of digital literacy in India, it is obvious that prospects are at their height in the e-commerce sector. In addition, the linking of brick and mortar stores with online portals could assist in the joint development of both online and offline pharmacies, thereby giving India’s healthcare sector much-needed improvement.

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Crucial Immune Boosters in Indian System

The recent outbreak of COVID has changed people’s behaviour in many ways, which has even affected the growth of the various market in the right way; being the largest exporter, consumer, and producer of spices, India accounts for half of the global trading in this sector.

Industries such as pharmaceuticals, indigenous alternative medicine, cosmetics, resin, and natural colour use spices in a considerable amount. Any interference in the domestic and global supply chain throws an adverse impact on the supply and production of vital industries and workers involved in spices’ processing and output.

Growth of Immune Boosting Spices during the Pandemic:

Customers across the globe are showing a massive interest in building their immunity and safeguarding their health. India, known as the king of spices, has a vast history of trading with China and Rome’s ancient civilization. The people in large amount has started using the zest with anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties like never to prevent the infection. Some spices double in rate, and many of the herbs have gone out of stock. Since the virus outbreak, there is an increase in the sale of black pepper, garlic, dry ginger, and turmeric.

Export Trend Moves Up:

The observation of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has shown that there is increasing use of spice in the world after the outbreak of a pandemic, which gave a massive rise in exports of Indian spices, by 23 % in dollar terms and 34% in rupee terms in June this year 2020, report by ASSOCHAM. It was found that chilies were the most exported zest from India in the fiscal year, 2020. With an anticipated volume of over 484 thousand metric tonnes. Cumin followed while turmeric ranked third.

Since May 2020, there is a surge in export and the resumption of cardamom e-auction, which has facilitated better price realization by the cardamom growers. The growing trend in exports in the auction prices rose by Rs 600, Touching an average of Rs 1615 per Kg. Around 100 tonnes of cardamom valued at Rs 25 crore have been exported to Saudi since May, the largest customer of Indian cardamom.

Some of the Immune Boosting Spices:

For building immunity, it is necessary to have a balanced diet with the inclination towards immunity boosters.


The bioactive ingredient of garlic, i.e., allicin, is released when the garlic is cut or chopped into pieces. Research has shown that allicin helps in reducing the common cold by 63%. Garlic is used as traditional medicine by major civilizations such as Egyptians, Chinese, and Babylonians since ancient times.


The bioactive agent of turmeric, i.e., curcumin, acts as an anti-inflammatory agent. AYUSH recommends that turmeric powder, basil, and grated ginger are the best immune boosters when consumed daily.


The bioactive compound of ginger, i.e., Gingerol, traditional medicine, is extensively used to cure asthma, coughs and colds, and gastrointestinal complaints. It can be taken either in juice or in tea, or in the form of a dried powder.

Black Pepper:

Pepper acts as a remarkable natural remedy for nasal congestion and sinuses, providing immediate relief. It has been found by research that including black pepper, powdered, or crushed daily, can strengthen the body’s defence, and can improve overall health.



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Technological Intervention- Changing the Dynamics of Nutrition Sector

In providing a promising new route in engaging and delivering successful nutrition intervention in young adults and adolescents, digital technologies such as social media, gamification, health tracking, education, social support and others play a vital role.

Increasing use of social media and smartphones by these age groups is making technology-based interventions specifically pertinent to help this age group and teach positive habits that can be carried further into adult life.

According to a recent review, a technology-based intervention can also help treat mental health, diet modification, physical inactivity and substance abuse.  Robotics and Artificial intelligence also help researchers learn more about the connections between technology and humans.

Emerging Technologies in R&D as a Nutritional Intervention: 

Microarray and nanotechnology, these new emerging technologies can advance the science of nutrition by developing, discovering, and delivering several intervention strategies to improve health and reduce the complication and risk of various diseases.

Food grade nanotechnology and microarray are being increasingly used to improve efficient encapsulation, increasing bioavailability and digestibility.

Supply Chain (Food Blockchain Revolution): 

Blockchain technology is becoming a new level of sharing information and transparency for the farmers to processors to packer to distributor to packaged goods maker to retailer to foodservice operator to the exporter to the consumer, blockchain technology is taking off as a novel for the agri-food business to disclose and record transactions in an open virtual space across the entire chain.

AI Revolutionizing Food Processing and Healthcare Business:

AI is impacting the food processing industry efficiently; it helps the industry both directly and indirectly. It allows farmers with weather predictions, which indirectly produces high-quality raw materials for food processing companies. It instantly soothes the food processing business by food safety compliance, maintaining cleanliness, developing products, and sorting packages and products. 

AI technology even plays a vital role in healthcare by forecasting potential high-risk conditions and improving diagnostic accuracy. With enhanced AI capabilities, robotics equipped with AI robust seems to play a substantial role as surgical assistants, delivery, and transportation aids.

Consumer Awareness through Apps: 

  • Lesson From m-Nutrition:
    m-Nutrition is a global mobile-based advisory service, promotes behavioural change around farming practices and nutrition to boost adults and children’s nutritional health in low-cost countries. This m-Nutrition is a well-designed service that provides individually practical, tailored, and context-particular advice lacking in other information sources.
  • E-Learning to Empower Front-Line Nutrition Workers in India:
    The department of child and women development and FaNS Project of Madhya Pradesh, India, implemented an interactive eLearning platform in February 2019 to provide counselling skills to 97 135 front line supervisors and workers, high-quality, standardized, and systematic training to boost nutrition knowledge. To analyse this digital tool’s effects on front line workers’ capacity-building, a study was conducted in December 2019, which showed that 25,000 have embarked on 40 hours training course and 7000 have completed it. The training benefited ninety-nine percent of participants, and they claimed that the training enhanced their nutrition knowledge and counselling skills. The practice was said to be systematic, comprehensive, and suited to participants’ roles and responsibilities.
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