Rational Food Fortification Programs to Alleviate Micronutrient DeficienciesSunil J Wimalawansa*
Endocrinology, Metabolism & Nutrition, Cardio-Metabolic Institute, Somerset, New Jersey, USA
- *Corresponding Author:
- Sunil J Wimalawansa
Endocrinology, Metabolism & Nutrition
Somerset, New Jersey, USA
E-mail: [email protected]
Received date: July 31, 2013; Accepted date: August 24, 2013; Published date: August 30, 2013
Citation: Wimalawansa SJ (2013) Food Fortification Programs to Alleviate Micronutrient Deficiencies. J Food Process Technol 4:257. doi:10.4172/2157-7110.1000257
Copyright: © 2013 Wimalawansa SJ. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Key presentations of severe malnutrition or undernutrition caused by macronutrient deficiencies are marasmus, a disease causing stunting; wasting; underweight or kwashiorkor; or a combination of these. Micronutrient insufficiencies cause a variety of disorders, and correction of these deficiencies on an individual basis is costprohibitive. Therefore, food fortification is an accepted, practical and affordable solution to overcome this problem. The cost of adding vitamins and minerals to commonly consumed foods is very low; estimated to range between 0.5% and 2.0% of the cost of a typical staple food. For formulations that include Vitamin A and D, iron, zinc, and folic acid, the cost is approximately US $8 to $10 per metric ton. If an individual consumes 100 g/day (37 kg/year) of the final product, the cost of fortification is approximately US $0.40 per person/year; a cost that is affordable to industry and consumers. For more complex formulations, such as the World Food Program’s (WFP) Corn Soy Blend, the cost increases to US $1.0 per person per year. The WFP estimates a minimum normal “food basket” cost of approximately US $0.25 per person/day or US $92 per year. Thus, the cost of adding micronutrients is approximately 0.6% of the food in the basic food basket or, at the higher end, about 1% of added cost. Nevertheless, the outcomes of alleviating micronutrient deficiencies, decreasing the disease burden, and the cost-effectiveness are exceptional. Especially the poor, who live in developing countries, would get the most benefit. In addition to enhancing the production of healthy food and assuring its wide availability and affordability, the food industry should constantly develop healthful, nutritious foods using innovative technologies and market these products to consumers at affordable prices. Cost-effective and practical micronutrient food-fortification programs should designed to add micronutrients to common staple foods, such as flour or parboiled rice, depending on the cultural and food habits of individuals in a given country.