Public hospital in the city of Porto Alegre is the first in Brazil to offer food from family farming

Minister Paulo Teixeira praised the GHC for its pioneering action

Translated by: Ana Paula Rocha

Brasil de Fato | Porto Alegre (Rio Grande do Sul state) |
Family farmers produce food that supply the Brazil’s Food Acquisition Program - Foto: Pedro Ventura/ Agência Brasília

On Friday (16), Grupo Hospitalar Conceição, also known as GHC, signed an agreement with nine family farming cooperatives to supply food to Brazil’s Food Acquisition Program (PAA, in Portuguese), an initiative of the federal government.

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GHC's director-president, Gilberto Barichello, thanked everyone involved for making the agreement happen, and said the hospital has been organizing the purchase of processed foods, such as juices, bread, cookies and snacks, which will be added to over 50 types of fresh food produced by family farmers.

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The Brazilian Minister for Agrarian Development and Family Farming, Paulo Texeira, praised the pioneering spirit of the GHC, which is "the first public hospital in Brazil to sign a public procurement contract with family farming."

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“Certainly, if people had more access to healthy food like that produced by family farming, we wouldn’t have so many diseases,” he said. The minister added that the government intends to expand this type of governmental purchase to the educational system, the Armed Forces and other areas.

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Cooperative member Gervásio Pluscinski highlighted the importance of cooperatives in getting this program off the ground. Cooperative member Bruno Justin talked about the importance of public policies for income generation. Sidnei Justin Witts represented the cooperatives at the signing of the contract.

In addition to reaching the agreement, the event held in the Jahyr Boeira de Almeida Auditorium, in the GHC Administrative Center, also marked the inauguration of the GHC Food and Nutrition Safety Commission chaired by nutritionist Marília Garcez, who emphasized the concern for food. "This care must start in food production and extend until it reaches the plates of the more than 10,000 users, residents, patients and companions of patients served daily at Grupo Hospitalar Conceição."

The ceremony was also attended by the director-president of the National Supply Company (Conab), Edegar Pretto; the administrative and financial director of the GHC, João Motta; the director of Health Care at the GHC, Luís Antônio Benvegnú; federal deputy Maria do Rosário, representing the Chamber of Deputies at the event; federal deputy Elvino Bohn Gass; and state deputies Zé Nunes and Miguel Rossetto.

Edited by: Katia Marko