The Lucky Iron Fish is a palm-sized fish or leaf-shaped cooking tool made of iron. When you add it to boiling liquid (like water, soup, sauces, or curries) for 10 minutes, it releases a significant portion of the daily required iron for a family. Clinical studies show that regular use of the Lucky Iron Fish improves anemia status and iron deficiency with the same efficiency, better compliance, and fewer side effects than iron supplements.
The business started in Cambodia and grew out of PhD research conducted by Founder and CEO Dr Gavin Armstrong at the University of Guelph. Why a fish? Because the symbol of a fish is considered lucky in Cambodia, where the journey began.
Just in time for Thanksgiving, and in the spirit of giving thanks and giving back, I had a chance to ask Anne Pringle, the programs and impact director for Lucky Iron Fish, about how the company is helping to combat iron deficiency, not just in Canadian kitchens but worldwide.
THANKFUL FOR HEALTH, EACH AND EVERY DAY
I love that adding the Lucky Iron Fish to a pot while it cooks means that the whole family is getting an iron boost in one step. You don’t have to take individual pills, and the whole dish is fortified. But your reach is even bigger than the family kitchen. GlobalMedic is one of your charitable partners helping you to battle this problem globally. What does that partnership look like?
Our goal is to help solve the world’s largest nutritional challenge: iron deficiency. This micronutrient deficiency affects 2 billion people, and a disproportionate number are women and children.
We are working with partners like Canadian non-profit GlobalMedic to distribute Lucky Iron Fish around the world. GlobalMedic has included Lucky Iron Fish in its Family Emergency Kits. They are given to people who have been displaced from their homes due to conflict or disaster and lack access to nutritious food and water. These kits also include a water purification system and other hygiene items. Lucky Iron Fish has been part of emergency relief programs in Ecuador, Indonesia, Yemen, Venezuela and Syria.
We believe in using business as a force for good. As a B Corp, we are operating in a way that is sustainable, ethical and socially responsible. Our goal is to help 2.5 million people around the world in the next five years, and our partners and customers are helping make this a reality.
Who are your other charitable partners?
Lucky Iron Fish reaches over 90 countries through e-commerce and large-scale partnerships with international non-governmental organizations (iNGOs).
We are fortunate to partner with over 50 organizations, both locally and globally, including World Vision (Tanzania), CARE (Benin), Sahara Aalhad (India), Health Bridges International (Peru), Missao Africa (Mozambique), Hearts in Motion (Guatemala), Free to Shine (Cambodia), Rotary (Zimbabwe). In Canada, we have partnered with Ryerson Food Hub and Yorkton Tribal Council and Black Creek Community Farm.
To date we have reached over 250,000 families, impacting more than 1 million individuals.
THE IMPACT FELT FAR AND WIDE WITH LUCKY IRON FISH
How do you measure the impact of your charitable partnerships?
We work with charitable partners in two ways: our Impact Fund direct donations and iNGO (international non-governmental organizations) partnerships.
Our Impact Fund donations go to partners like GlobalMedic, local food banks and midwifery clinics that work with underserved populations. We track the number of units donated and distributed. And who the end user is, the type of training the organization provides to the end user, and compliance (when possible).
With our iNGO partners like World Vision and CARE, we also track improvement in iron status (measured through hemoglobin). We track the reduction in the signs and symptoms associated with iron deficiency (headaches, nausea, feeling faint, etc). We also look at compliance- how often people use Lucky Iron Fish each week.
By collaborating with organizations that have strong local connections and an understanding of what communities need, we can make a greater impact. Through our train-the-trainer model, we train on-the-ground community healthcare workers and organizational staff to identify iron deficiency. They also identify local foods that are rich in iron and demonstrate how to cook with the Lucky Iron Fish or Leaf to ensure families get their daily recommended dose. Local community healthcare workers are equipped to support the nutritional health of their unique communities.
We are so grateful for our customers and our partners who believe in our mission. A special thank you to all the community healthcare workers who work diligently to distribute the Fish and Leaf within their communities.
GIVEAWAY WITH LUCKY IRON FISH
AND WE WANT YOU TO WIN!
But just in case you don’t, we have a 10% discount on the Lucky Iron Fish or Lucky Iron Leaf only, for Canadian and US readers. The code is “AUBURN10”.
Enter for a chance to win one of your own! Tell us in the comments below:
IN WHAT WAYS DO YOU GIVE BACK TO YOUR COMMUNITY?
One lucky reader will win a Lucky Iron Fish, Cleaning Bundle and Cookbook valued at $97.99
Contest is open to Canadian followers (excluding Quebec) who have reached the age of majority. Contest Closes on October 14th, 2022 at 12:00 pm noon EST. No purchase is necessary. One prize (1) will be awarded. One entrant will be selected at random from all eligible entries. The selected entrant will be contacted directly via email or social media entry point and will have one week to respond. A skill-testing mathematical question must be answered correctly in order to be deemed the winner. Prize must be accepted as awarded. No substitutions. We reserve the right to cancel the contest at any time. The contest is not affiliated with Facebook or Instagram in any way.
This post has been sponsored by Lucky Iron Fish.
All images by Libby Roach.