Commodity Distribution, A Practical Guide for Field Staff (United Nations High Commission for Refugee, 1997, 77 p.) 
Annex 3  Reporting on Food Distribution 

Methodology^{13}
^{13} From: MSF Nutritional Guidelines, Paris 1995 and State of the Art about Food Basket monitoring (Draft) MSF Holland 1995.
This method seeks to measure the calorific value (per person per day) of the ration actually collected by each family and to compare this with the value intended to be delivered by the distribution system. The measure is against the food value actually intended on the day, not against the theoretical ration. For example if the calorific value of the theoretical ration is 2,000 Kcal/p/d but due to logistic problems the distributing agency only has 1,500 Kcal/p/d on hand for distribution, then the calculation is made against the 1,500 value.
NOTE: Although Kcals are used as a measure in this methodology this method does not provide any information or analysis on nutritional aspects of the ration system. IT MEASURES ONLY THE EFFICIENCY OF THE DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM, NOT THE ADEQUACY OF THE FOOD BASKET. 
To prepare this report you will need the “On Site Distribution Monitoring Report, Survey Worksheet” and the “Results Table”, see p. 65, (photocopy these and give them to your implementing partners)
Before you go to the distribution site:
1. First calculate the Calorific value of the ration (per person per day) which the distribution agency is aiming to distribute on that day. Fill in the row in the Worksheet “Targeted ration g/person/day” for each commodity.
Then calculate the calorific value (per person per day) for each commodity (use Table 3) and fill the row “Targeted ration Kcal/person/day”
Add each of these up to give the total value of the ration and fill the box “Total Kcal/person/day”.
2. Calculate what 90% and 110% of the targeted ration would be. These will be used as a cut off points.
Fill in the boxes on the table “90% of targeted ration” and “110% of targeted ration”.
3. Determine the number of days which the distribution is intended to cover.
If the number of days is unknown or unreliable then the calculation is only possible retroactively. The calculation is only possible when the next distribution has been performed, and so the number of days covered can be counted. Fill in the space on the Worksheet “No. Of days covered by this distribution:”.
At the distribution site:
4. Choose a site close to the distribution point, but at such a distance that the activities do not interfere with the distribution itself. The beneficiaries must not have a chance to sell or dispose of the commodities. Have two monitors and one supervisor present, with a 50 kg and 5 kg scales (e.g. Salter scales). Have the monitors select the beneficiaries (often the family heads) for the sample.
5. A random systematic sample of 30 persons is drawn from all persons receiving commodities at each of the distribution points which you survey. The sample should be equally spread over the total number of households and over the whole distribution day, (e.g. if 500 persons/family heads will attend today, you will measure the ration of every 500/30 = 16th family). The beneficiary is selected and accompanied to the point where the ration will be weighed by a monitor.
6. Record if the person collecting the ration is male or female. Fill the box “M/F” on the Worksheet.
7. Determine the number of people for whom the ration is intended from the ration or registration card. Fill the box “Family Size” on the worksheet.
8. Weigh all food items separately and note their weights on the worksheet
Fill in the weight under the commodity name on the Worksheet for each family.
Back at the office:
9. Calculate the calorific value of the weight of each commodity which was given to each family. A table of the calorific values of various commodities is attached, Table 3. Fill in the row “Kcal” for each commodity.
10. Calculate the total calorific value of the food given to that family by adding the individual values for each commodity. Fill in the Column “Total Kcal” for each commodity.
11. Calculate the average calorific value, per person, per day for each family by dividing the Total Kcal by the number of days and the number of persons in that family. Fill in the box in the Worksheet “Kcal/person/day” for each family.
12. When you have calculated the “Kcal/person/day” for each family then count the number of families who have a value of “Kcal/person/day” less than the “90% of targeted ration” which you calculated earlier. (See 2 Above) Fill in the appropriate box in the Results Table.
13. Calculate the percentage of families (out of the total of 30 families) receiving less than “90% of targeted ration”
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14. Do a similar calculation and fill in the boxes for “No. of families 90%  110%” and “No of families >110%”.
Interpretation
In a good efficient distribution system none of the families should receive < 90% of the intended Kcal. Therefore that figure should be A0.
The majority of families should be in the 90%  110% range.
Over time if the percentage of families in the 90%  110% range is decreasing then the efficiency of the distribution system is deteriorating. Action must be taken to correct this.
Compare the “% Female” result on the worksheet with information you have on the overall % of female headed households among the beneficiaries. If the % of females collecting rations is significantly different from the % of female headed households in the population then it may be that your distribution system is not allowing fair access to women. Corrective action should be taken.
(...)
Table 3
PULSES AND OILSEEDS:  
BEANS, DRIED 
335 
PEAS, DRIED 
335 
CASHEW NUT 
543 
COCONUT, FRESH, MATURE 
388 
GROUNDNUTS, DRY 
549 
LENTILS 
340 
SESAME SEEDS 
558 
SOYBEAN 
405 
SUNFLOWER SEEDS 
486 
 
VEGETABLES: 

EGGPLANT 
32 
KIDNEY BEANS, RAW 
36 
LEAVES, MEDIUM GREEN (PUMPKIN) 
27 
LEAVES, LIGHT GREEN (CABBAGE) 
26 
MAIZE, FRESH 
152 
ONION 
41 
SHALLOT 
41 
PEPPERS, SEEDS REMOVED 
48 
TOMATO 
21 
LEMON 
59 
AMLA 
58 
 
FRUITS (FRESH)  
AVOCADO 
121 
BANANA 
88 
CITRUS 
49 
GUAVA 
64 
MANGO 
60 
PAWPAW 
32 
PAPAYA 
32 
PINEAPPLE 
47 
WATERMELON 
22 
 
FRUIT (CANNED):  
FRUIT IN SYRUP 
60 
 
FRUIT (DRIED):  
APRICOTS 
270 
DATES 
245 
 
SUGAR 
400 
SALT 
0 
 
MEAT (CANNED) 

MEAT, AVERAGE 
220 
CHICKEN 
215 
CORNED BEEF 
233 
PORK 
271 
 
FISH: 

CANNED FISH IN OIL 
305 
CANNED FISH 
150 
DRIED FISH, HARD 
380 
DRIED FISH, SALTED 
270 
DRIED FISH, WHOLE (FRESHWATER) 
309 
SARDINES, CANNED IN OIL 
309 
FPC (NORSE) TYPE B 
390 
 
MILK AND MILK PRODUCTS:  
MILK, COW, WHOLE 
79 
DRIED WHOLE MILK (DWM) 
490 
DRIED SKIM MILK (DSM) 
360 
DRIED SKIM MILK (DSM), FORTIFIED 
360 
CONDENSED MILK, SWEETENED 
325 
EVAPORATED MILK 
150 
CANNED CHEESE 
355 
 
OILS AND FATS:  
ANIMAL FAT, RENDERED 
902 
BUTTER 
725 
BUTTER OIL, GHEE 
862 
MARGARINE, MARGARIT 
735 
PALM OIL, RED 
875 
VEGETABLE OIL 
890 
 
MISCELLANEOUS:  
TEA 
40 
COFFEE GROUND 
56 
HIGHPROTEIN BISCUITS 
500 
LICHIS BASTARD 
61 
SPICES MIXED, GARLIC 
145 
SPICES MIXED, TUMERIC 
349 
YEAST DRIED (FOOD) 
344 
 
 


 