Food Fortification

About Food Fortification

In ASHA, Nutrition is a holistic concept, and cannot be approached nutrient by nutrient, whether it is soil nutrition or plant nutrition or human nutrition. “One Health” applies here. Dietary diversity is a key approach to addressing (mal)nutrition, and agricultural/forest/kitchen garden pathways along with extensive livestock systems are important to address dietary diversity in rural India. This is essentially a comprehensive livelihoods perspective, which encompasses nutrition and health in such a livelihoods framework. Other networks in India also focus on entitlements in the form of food security schemes when they raise issues around Nutrition, and ASHA works along with such networks too as and when the need arises. Influenced by corporate lobbies, Government of India recently announced massive and ambitious scaling up of rice fortification in all food schemes, with synthetic iron, folic acid and B12 being added to such rice. ASHA is concerned about this reductionist silver bullet approach, which has been proven to be ineffective against anaemia and could also become unsafe for a large population of thalassemia, sickle cell anaemia, acute infections’ patients.
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