Africa Food Environment Research Network (FERN)
Integrated into the MEALS4NCDs project’s technical Work Packages were two capacity-building workshops. The first workshop took place in Ghana in August 2019, during the week of the Project Launch, and focused on strengthening the project team's capacity to adopt and adapt the INFORMAS protocols and processes. The second workshop convened the project team, project Advisory Board, and researchers in the African sub-region whose work relates directly to improving food environments in Africa, to share experiences, challenges and opportunities. As part of this workshop, a critical mass of experts was identified to form the Africa Food Environment Research Network (FERN). Having received the needed training, FERN members were then encouraged to implement at minimum, the Food EPI Module of INFORMAS in their respective countries, and the Network's capacity to seek funding support to continue with its research and advocacy work beyond the life of the project was further enhanced.
FERN2020 was held virtually on November 3 to 5, 2020. The meeting theme was "Connecting Food Environment Researchers Across Africa"
FERN2021 was held on November 3, 10, and 17 2021. The theme was "Leveraging Food Environment Research Network (FERN) to Transform Africa’s Food Systems"
FERN2023 (November 1 – 3). Theme: "Facilitating the identification, collation and valorisation of food environment research, policy, and practice in Africa"