WFP, MOSS and GAIN celebrate start of flour fortification in Egypt

Reading time 2 min.
Flag of Egypt
Flag of Egypt

Aswan, Egypt (GAIN/WFP) – The fortification of Egyptian flour, used in the production of widely-consumed baladi bread, with iron and folic acid has been launched at Aswan, Egypt.

The program aims to reduce widespread anemia in Egypt, currently affecting 40% of the population, by 28% in five years.

The program is a collaboration between the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and the Ministry of Social Solidarity (MOSS).

The ceremony in Aswan was attended by Minister of Social Solidarity H.E. Ali El Meselhi; Aswan’s Governor General Samir Youssef; Executive Director Mr. Marc Van Ameringen of GAIN; WFP Egypt Country Director Mr. Bishow Parajuli; and other partners including Director of the National Nutrition Institute Dr. Azza Gohar, on behalf of H.E. Minister of Health and Population; and Chairman of the Holding Company for Food Industries, Dr. Ahmed El Rakaiby.

It included a visit to the Nasser Aswan Flour Mill, one of the sites where flour will be fortified, to inaugurate the project.

“This fortification project is part of the government intervention to support the livelihood of the poor in Egypt” said H.E. Dr. Ali El Moselhi, Minister of Social Solidarity.

With generous support and funding of US$ 3 million from GAIN, the iron and folic acid fortification program ultimately aims to reduce the prevalence of iron deficiency anemia in Egypt and to raise public awareness around the importance of fortification, supplementation and good overall nutrition practices. Anemia is currently estimated to afflict 40% of the population in the poorest parts of the country.

“We are proud that Aswan was chosen as the first governorate to inaugurate this vital project,” said Aswan’s Governor General Samir Youssef. “We welcome initiatives that will improve the health and nutrition of the people of Aswan,” he noted.

Executive Director of GAIN, Mr. Marc Van Ameringen said: “The start of this programme is a great moment for GAIN, and brings the number of projects we support worldwide to 19. Today is also a memorable moment because this program will make a significant contribution to a healthy Egypt, and deliver tangible long-term benefits to the government and the partners from the private sector who are involved.”

“The project is expected to reduce the prevalence of iron-deficiency anemia by 28%,” said Dr. Azza Gohar, Director of National Nutrition Institute affiliated with the Ministry of Health. “The project is part of the government strategy to address malnutrition in Egypt,” she noted.

The project will first fortify flour in the four governorates of Aswan, Fayoum, Sharkeya and Kaft El Sheikh. Later, seven more governorates will follow and subsequently nation-wide coverage will be reached.

International  International news in general
Support Follow Afrik-News on Google News