Kenya unveils six-year fortification project
Staff Writer | April 28, 2017
Kenya's ministry of health in partnership with multilateral donors and academia launched a six year project to promote nutrition status in the country through mass fortification of key staples.
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Cabinet Secretary for Health Cleopa Mailu said the Kenya National Food Fortification Program seeks to combat malnutrition through adding vitamins and minerals to maize flour, edible oils and salt.
"The country is still grappling with severe malnutrition and stunting that has worsened in the current drought cycle. The food fortification project will therefore help combat nutrients deficiency," said Mailu.
The ministry of health will partner with a local university and industry to implement the six year national food fortification project funded by the European Union.
It focuses on improving the capacity of manufacturers to fortify maize flour and other staples consumed by poor households where the levels of malnutrition are higher.
Mailu said the project will complement ongoing initiatives to boost nutrition status in the country in line with World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines.
"The government and other stakeholders will intensify awareness targeting millers and consumers to promote uptake of fortified foods," said Mailu.
He added that Kenya has established policy and legal framework to promote mass fortification of key staples with vitamins, iron and zinc.
Fortified foods are beyond the reach of Kenya's poor household, hence the need to strengthen the capacity of millers to manufacture and distribute them at cheaper cost.
The head of EU Delegation in Kenya, Erik Habers said the six year food fortification project will ensure that micronutrients are added to 95 percent of staples consumed in poor households.
"This project aims to strengthen the capacity of cereal millers to deliver micronutrient rich staple food to populations at risk of malnutrition," said Habers. ■ What to read next
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