Nutrition International is helping state governments in India increase the availability of fortified foods in their social safety net programs (SSNPs), improving access to critical micronutrients.
Globally, more than two billion people, including women and children, do not get the micronutrients they need to survive and thrive. The impacts of micronutrient deficiencies are devastating for individuals, families and entire countries.
Poor diet and limited access to nutritious foods are among the key reasons why someone may lack crucial micronutrients for human development such as: iron, folic acid, vitamin A and iodine.
Food fortification has been in place in industrialized nations since the early 20th century and has helped to eliminate deficiency-related diseases in high-income countries, yet its success in low- and middle-income countries is somewhat limited. This is due to barriers such as lack of political will, which often leads to under-prioritization by governments, the food fortification industry’s lack of capacity and resources, ineffective and weak regulation and enforcement, and limited consumer understanding of the benefits of consuming fortified foods.
In countries where there is political commitment to food fortification and where legislation exists to support it, there can often be challenges with effective implementation and monitoring.