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Why fortification?

Food fortification is the practice of deliberately increasing the content of an essential micronutrient in a food, so as to improve the nutrition quality of the food supply and achieve a public health benefit.

Oil Fortification – one of the most affordable vehicles for food fortification © BASF SE 

Staple food producers add selected essential micronutrients such as vitamin A, iron, iodine or zinc to foods regularly consumed by a large proportion of low-income population groups. These foods commonly include edible oil, cereal flour, sugar, salt, and condiments. Food fortification is an effective and sustainable solution to improve population health status.

Eight Good Reasons for Fortifying Staple Foods

  1. The fortification of staple foods is a very effective and low-cost method of combating or even eliminating the globally prevalent deficiency of micronutrients. The market-based approach makes the program robust, sustainable, and scalable.
  2. The existing nutritional habits of the target groups can be retained.
  3. The addition of essential nutrients to foods is an established approach. The necessary technologies are available and can be implemented worldwide.
  4. The programs strengthen the local food industry instead of relying on food imports to improve nutrition.
  5. The many benefits in the fields of education, productivity and health are offset by only marginal costs – making food fortification one of the best investments in human development.
  6. Multi-sector, local alliances of authorities, industry, international organizations and the civil society enhance the acceptance and awareness of the programs.
  7. The participation of local industry in improving the nutrition of lower-income target groups creates and deepens awareness of entrepreneurial accountability on the local scale.
  8. The right to sustainable nutrition is a human right and the basis for implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
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