Amidst the rising cases of malnutrition and foodborne illnesses leading to deaths in Nigeria, the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) joined forces with eHealth Africa and the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) to address the issue of enhancing food fortification in Nigeria’s food sector.
This collaborative effort was showcased during a webinar hosted by NESG, focusing on the impact of food fortification compliance, particularly emphasizing industrial fortification.
Partnership aims to promote food fortification compliance in Nigeria
Dr. Michael Ojo, the Country Director of the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), provided an opening remark, highlighting that this partnership involving NESG, eHealth Africa, CISLAC, and supported by GAIN, aims to promote advocacy for food fortification compliance.
Their objective is to recognize ongoing efforts and formulate actionable recommendations that encourage industrial fortification.
He acknowledged that the government has taken policy measures to promote fortification of staple foods.
Regulatory agencies like the National Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), and the Federal Competition & Consumer Protection Council (FCCPC) have been entrusted with monitoring and ensuring producer adherence to fortification standards.
During the panel discussion, Penjani Mkambula, the Global Programme Lead for Food Fortification at GAIN, highlighted the historical effectiveness of fortification in addressing not only micronutrient deficiencies but also reducing the burden of specific diseases and medical conditions, such as the reduction of Goitre through the introduction of iodized salt.