11 December 2016
Visit aciworldwide.com

MasterCard and World Food Programme team on 'digital food'

13 September 2012  |  7201 views  |  0 African village bank

MasterCard has struck a two-pronged global partnership with the World Food Programme (WFP) that will see the pair use digital payments technology to both raise and distribute aid.

Typically associated with dropping bags of grain from helicopters into famine-hit parts of the world, the WFP is seeking to improve how it targets the hungry and distributes aid to them.

The UN food assistance branch helps feed around 100 million people, in dozens of countries around the world, each year. Most of these people either receive food directly or through paper vouchers with which to buy it.

However, around two million people - five per cent of the WFP's recipients - get "digital food"; money delivered electronically that can be used in local stores. This provides greater transparency, security and data for tracking how money is spent, as well as, says Alan Brown, the WFP's head of private partnerships in the UK, making it easier to bring aid to people in countries that are hard to access physically.

This is being seen in war-torn Syria, where vouchers are currently being delivered to women for use at various shops in the country, Nancy Roman, WFP director of communications, told a press conference in London today.

Now, by tapping MasterCard's payment and technology expertise, the WFP plans to rapidly expand this digital project, refining and improving its systems so that in the near future 30% of people it helps get food vouchers via mobile phones or cards even if they do not have regular access to banks.

MasterCard is also helping the WFP create an online donation mechanism that will enable more people to give money. The platform will let retailers offer donations at their checkouts so customers can give without leaving the site. In addition, mobile applications or game developers will be able to offer options to support WFP right from within their app or game.

Brown says that the WFP initially hopes that the platform - set to be ready for use by early next year - will be used by retailers for promotions around specific occasions such as Christmas and World Food Day.

Says Roman: "By drawing on MasterCard's technical know-how and international reach, WFP will further develop both its electronic voucher programme that enables hungry families around the globe to buy nutritious food in local markets as well as its online donation mechanism that engages individuals and brands in a global community working together to solve hunger."

Ann Cairns, president, international, markets, MasterCard, adds: "MasterCard's vision of a world beyond cash is the perfect partner for WFP's vision of a world beyond hunger. Today we have committed to delivering a ground breaking partnership, which will ensure our Digital Food initiative will go on to meet the requirements of those who need it most around the world."
KeywordsE-COMMERCE

Comments: (0)

Comment on this story (membership required)

Finextra news in your inbox

For Finextra's free daily newsletter, breaking news flashes and weekly jobs board: sign up now

Related stories

Developing country lenders drive virtual banking revolution - EIU

Developing country lenders drive virtual banking revolution - EIU

12 September 2012  |  4965 views  |  0 comments
Citi and USAID team on developing world mobile money push

Citi and USAID team on developing world mobile money push

13 June 2012  |  6373 views  |  0 comments
MasterCard targets underbanked with mobile money partnership programme

MasterCard targets underbanked with mobile money partnership programme

23 February 2012  |  9376 views  |  0 comments
Visa targets unbanked with mobile pre-paid account

Visa targets unbanked with mobile pre-paid account

17 November 2011  |  8594 views  |  0 comments
Mobiles to bank the unbanked

Mobiles to bank the unbanked

28 June 2011  |  9176 views  |  0 comments
World Bank calls for financial services expansion in emerging markets

World Bank calls for financial services expansion in emerging markets

15 September 2009  |  6939 views  |  0 comments

Related company news

 

Related blogs

Create a blog about this story (membership required)
Visit VocaLink.comFind out moreVisit capgemini.com

Top topics

Most viewed Most shared
China tops world fintech rankingsChina tops world fintech rankings
9039 views comments | 39 tweets | 32 linkedin
EBA bends under weight of PSD2 mandatesEBA bends under weight of PSD2 mandates
8489 views comments | 38 tweets | 48 linkedin
Guesswork alone can crack Visa card security - Newcastle UniversityGuesswork alone can crack Visa card securi...
8144 views 12 comments | 15 tweets | 27 linkedin
PSD2 will transform the payments landscapePSD2 will transform the payments landscape
7458 views comments | 24 tweets | 13 linkedin
N26 opens up to 17 European countriesN26 opens up to 17 European countries
7043 views comments | 16 tweets | 24 linkedin

Featured job

to Six-Figure Base, Bonus, Benefits
London, UK

Find your next job