A recent webinar hosted by experts of Global Summit for Food Fortification by Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) in association with Mumbai based Hexagon Nutrition was conducted to address the challenges experienced by the premix suppliers and fortified food producers. Stakeholders & Industry Experts from Stern Vitamin, BASF, voices from Bangladesh and Mozambique participated.
Quoting the latest Lancet Series on Maternal & Child undernutrition, Dr Saskia Osendarp, Micronutrient Forum highlighted the fact that an estimated 2 billion people worldwide suffer from micronutrient deficiencies and this number is likely to grow amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Large-scale food fortification is a cost-effective and proven strategy to fight micronutrient malnutrition. Lockdown and quarantine measures to mitigate the spread of the virus have made nutritious foods less affordable and less accessible thereby increasing global hunger and malnutrition", Dr Saskia Osendarp said.
It is the responsibility of the premix supplier to maintain the long-term inventory of key ingredients and collaborate with dependable suppliers.
Vikram Kelkar, Group Managing Director, Hexagon Nutrition pinpointed the operational challenges of production, supply chain, logistics, payments & customer connect during the pandemic even after the known fact that premix suppliers fall into the essential goods category.
Strengthening the food distribution systems is the need of the hour so that food producers have access to the stock without relying on international supply chains directly, Adeline Provent, Program Manager GAIN Premix Facility (GPF) said.