Scaling up rice fortification in Asia: Strategy to improve micronutrient intake, health, and economic status in the region

This publication provides a comprehensive overview of how fortifying rice with multiple essential vitamins and minerals can be an effective and sustainable strategy to improve micronutrient intake, and thus contribute significantly to improved health and economic status.

Rice fortification is the enrichment of rice with essential vitamins and minerals post-harvesting to increase its nutritional value.

With more than three billion people relying on rice as a staple food, rice fortification offers a unique opportunity to substantially improve nutrition and, as such, the health and economic status of a large number of people in many countries at a very low cost.

Micronutrient deficiencies affect more than two billion people worldwide and are especially prevalent in developing countries. Also referred to as hidden hunger, micronutrient deficiencies impair physical growth and cognitive development and have long-term effects on health, learning ability, and productivity. Consequently, micronutrient deficiencies increase morbidity and mortality across the lifespan and have a negative impact on social and economic development.

Scaling up rice fortification in Asia: This special supplement is based on the presentations given during the September 2014 Scaling Up Rice Fortification workshop held in Bangkok, Thailand, co-organized by the Food Fortification Initiative (FFI) in Asia, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), the Micronutrient Initiative (MI), PATH, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).

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