ISLAMABAD: Planning Commission of Pakistan in collaboration with international development partners including Food and Agriculture Organisation and World Food Programme had trained the staff of 250 flour mills on wheat fortifications in order to overcome the issues and challenges of malnutrition and stunted growth in the country.
These mills were also provided micro-feeders to mix iron, folic acid and zinc in the flour wheat to provide nutrient filled food for children and women to overcome the malnutrition and stunted growth, said an official in the Ministry of Planning Development and Reforms.
He said that the steps were taken to address the issues of malnutrition and challenges of stunted growth, which were effecting the efforts of human development index of the country.
Besides providing the micro-feeders, he said that special efforts were also made for the capacity building of staff of these mills and other government sector institutions to ensure the strict compliance of quality and standards of foods, he added.
So far, he said that about 100,000 tons of the wheat flour were fortified with iron, folic acid and zinc with the micro-feeders, besides the capacity building of governmental organization in order to maintain the standards as well as ensuring the provision of quality and nutrient filled food.
Under the initiative about 76 vegetable ghee and edible oil manufacturing mills in Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were also provided pre-mix for mixing Vitamin D in the vegetable ghee and edible, he added.
He informed that these mills had produced about 950,000 tons of edible oil and ghee, besides the capacity building of the workforce to produce nutrient filled ghee and oil for cementing the initiatives for human resource development and improving the human health int he country.
He further said that Planning Commission of Pakistan in collaboration with FAO would also launch ‘Pakistan dietary guideline for better nutrient’ by end of current month aiming at to provide dietary characteristics for all age groups.
The initiative is also aimed at to overcome the malnutrition, stunted growth, and food deficiencies among the women and children.
The guidelines have been finalized, covering two agro-ecological zones having information about 350 raw and cooked food items with 25 nutrition parameters to ensure strict quality control.
To address the issue of stunted growth and malnutrition, he said that the linkages with academia was also strengthened and 52 national universities were engaged to conduct studies and research on production of high quality and and nutrient filled food.