Thrust on food fortification in country
CHITTAGONG, Dec 29: Speakers at a recent seminar at the port-city have emphasised the importance of food fortification in the country. They expressed the view at the seminar, held on the occasion of inauguration ceremony of the food fortification programme, jointly organised by Mostafa Group of Industries and Canada's Micronutrient Initiative (MI).
A number of nutrition experts, scholars, researchers and consultants from various organisations exchanged their views about country's food fortification on the occasion.
University of Chittagong's Department of Accounting and Information Systems' Associate Professor Md Salim Uddin presented the keynote paper titled "Food Fortification: A case for Bangladesh Public Health" in the programme.
Its theme was to discuss the country's public health scenario with special reference to malnutrition to justify the prospects and possibility of food fortification here. The paper also attempted to explain the rationale of edible oil fortification, its cost efficiency and all other related issues.
The study revealed, food fortification in Bangladesh is socially beneficial, financially feasible and commercially rewarding in terms of country's health and food related indicators. He also said food fortification would soon become an important element of strategy to reduce country's micronutrient malnutrition.
He pointed out that food fortification was not the appropriate tool in all situations, rather it would give optimum result if other techniques were combined with it. According to him it has been critical to identify all elements underlying any given nutritional problem -- food security, inadequate dietary diversity, lack of nutritional education and the state of food processing. All these factors must be considered in determining the most appropriate strategy to be used and hence the role to be played by fortification, he said.
Adequate quality control of food fortification processes was often overlooked in the past. If this negligence continues it will not be possible to realise the benefits of upgraded technologies, he added.