What is HETN?

  • HETN was launched in 2006 as a Charitable Foundation (1116097), registered in the UK
  • Our primary aim was to create awareness of Hidden Hunger (Type B Malnutrition)
  • Our methods included advocacy, education, networking and research
  • HETN’s approach was based on numerous scientific studies that demonstrated the importance of good nutrition in the prevention and management of chronic disease.

Having successfully fulfilled our mandate, and with the death of our principal trustee and funder, Ian Marks, in January 2018, it was decided to close the charity. Our website remains popular, so that will continue under the watchful eye of Dr Geoff Douglas, who was HETN's CEO.


  • HETN benefited several thousand people in South Africa by partnering with NGOs in the field, in an attempt to ensure that their nutritional interventions were appropriate and cost effective

Society of St Vincent de Paul (SSVP) - Crèche Feeding
South African National Tuberculosis Association (SANTA) - Community Based TB Support
World Vision South Africa (WVSA) - Orphans & Vulnerable Children

  • We have provided wholegrain food supplements, with all the cereal fat, fibre, vitamins and minerals intact, and with the addition of all the required micronutrients in a form that is bio-available (chelates or food form)
  • HETN has supported the philosophy of nutrition in a food form, and  has challenged the beliefs of International Agencies (WHO, WFP, the Global Fund, World Vision, GAIN) and the Food Industry (Nestle, Nutriset) concerning nutrient form. This has included criticism of Plumpy’Nut
  • HETN facilitated a pilot study assessing the impact of e’Pap on the health and well-being of crèche children and adult TB patients in South Africa. The outcomes from this study were delivered through multiple presentations in South Africa, Botswana, Israel and other international venues.
  • As HETN's CEO, Geoff spoke at many meetings, both local and international. He has written blogs. He has been on a lecture tour. He has written a book - Life is a Fatal Illness - and several pamphlets. He has spoken on radio and television. He has answered numerous nutrition queries on social media.

HETN's People

Geoffrey Douglas  KStJ  MSc  MA  FRCP  MFOM

Geoff is a physician and occupational medicine specialist, with 30 years of work experience in Africa.

He had extensive working knowledge and practice in Swaziland, ranging from family healthcare to employee well-being. He was active in promoting HIV awareness and training in the late 80s.

As an holistic practitioner, Geoff has developed his interest and awareness of the significant role nutrition can and should play in health. He now lives with his wife, Penny, on the farm - Saint Laurent - in France, where they practise permaculture.

Gary Orr  MSc MB BS MRCPsych

Gary lived in the UK for many years, but was born and brought up in South Africa, and his passion for that country and its rich cultural diversity has never left him.

He has worked in the NHS as a consultant psychiatrist, and also in the pharmaceutical industry, leading on the development of clinical trials in the UK. He now lives in Australia.


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