For­ti­fi­ca­tion Is Not En­rich­ment

Consumer Voice - - Project In Focus -

‘For­ti­fi­ca­tion’ and ‘en­rich­ment’ are terms used to de­scribe the ad­di­tion of nu­tri­ents to foods, but are two sep­a­rate con­cepts. En­rich­ment refers to the restora­tion of nu­tri­ents lost dur­ing the han­dling, pro­cess­ing, or stor­age of foods, and lev­els are gen­er­ally based on Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion (FDA) stan­dards of iden­tity. For­ti­fi­ca­tion refers to the vol­un­tary ad­di­tion of nu­tri­ents at lev­els be­yond those nat­u­rally oc­cur­ring in the food. Glob­ally, the de­ci­sion to for­tify prod­ucts is left to in­di­vid­ual food man­u­fac­tur­ers. Vol­un­tary for­ti­fi­ca­tion is a com­mon prac­tice in many coun­tries. Many coun­tries in­clud­ing the United States, Canada and Aus­tralia re­quire manda­tory for­ti­fi­ca­tion of cer­tain sta­ple foods with spe­cific nu­tri­ent(s) to im­prove pub­lic health, such as the for­ti­fi­ca­tion of en­riched flour with folic acid to re­duce the risk of neu­ral tube birth de­fects, and also re­strict the for­ti­fi­ca­tion of foods with cer­tain nu­tri­ents such as vi­ta­min D.

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