Nutrition | Events and meetings | WHO/FFI joint harmonization workshop for wheat and flour fortification

WHO/FFI joint harmonization workshop for wheat and flour fortification

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A World Health Organization (WHO) and Flour Fortifuication Initiative joint harmonization workshop for wheat and flour fortification was held in Amman, Jordan, from 20 to 22 February 2012, in partnership with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and the Micronutrient Initiative (MI).

The workshop was organized because many countries in the Region have been fortifying wheat flour based on the recommendations of a WHO/UNICEF/MI workshop held in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1998, prior to the 2006 publication of the WHO/Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Guidelines and Recommendations on Food Fortification and the 2009 WHO Interim Consensus Statement. Futhermore, there is increasing evidence of vitamin D and zinc deficiencies in women and children in the Region.

The objectives of the workshop were:

review current fortification practices in the Region and discuss strategies for regional harmonization with WHO guidelines

to inform government policy-makers and millers about the WHO recommendations on wheat flour fortification and of the implications of these recommendations for premix cost, flour product properties, and trade within and outside the Region

to assess the current status of vitamin and mineral nutrition, specifically for zinc and vitamin D deficiencies, and evaluate the potential for including zinc and vitamin D in wheat flour fortification standards

to outline steps for national adaptation/adjustment of the recommendations, in developing or revising national flour fortification programmes

to identify national and regional approaches to improving the effectiveness of national fortification programmes.

During the workshop, participants used the available data from baking trials, consumption estimates and other sources to revise existing guidelines on fortification levels. The workshop also reviewed draft standards for fortified flour and premixes for the use of countries in preparing country-specific legislative instruments for flour fortification.

Related link

Report on the Joint WHO/Flour Fortification Initiative harmonization workshop for wheat and maize flour fortification Amman,Jordan, 20–22 February 2012

Nutrition publications


Statistics and figures

WHO has several nutrition-related global databases. They include data for countries in the Region. Please click on the links to access them.

Vitamin and Mineral Nutrition Information System

WHO Global Database on Body Mass Index

WHO Global Database on Child Growth and Malnutrition

WHO Global Data Bank on Infant and Young Child Feeding

Some nutrition-related data from the Regional Health Observatory:

Estimates of anaemia in non-pregnant women of reproductive age

Anaemia in preschool-age children

Trend estimates for under 5 child malnutrition: