NEWS AND EVENTS
July 22, 2005
UNICEF holds briefing on Uzbek flour fortification program
United Nations Children?s Fund (UNICEF) office in Tashkent hosted a briefing on National Program on Flour Fortification of Uzbekistan on 22 July.
The program was developed in 2003 with initiative the Uzbek government and envisages production of flour enriched with iron and folic acid. In 2004, Uzbekistan won grant worth US$2.8 million of Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition to implement this program.
The event briefed on problems of iron deficiency anemia and consequences of folic acid deficit. It was noted that some 50,000 women are dieing from iron deficiency anemia each year during birth. Iron deficiency anemia also results in weak intellectual development of children. 2-5 billion people affected with iron deficiency anemia in the world.
Iron deficiency anemia affects over 60% of women of childbearing age and a third of children under five years in Uzbekistan. The program targets women and girls between 15-49 and children from six months to five years. Overall, the program will cover some 9 million people.
Folic acid deficit results in serious diseases and disabilities among newborn infants. It can also hit adults.
The program stipulates attraction of 48 Uzbek mills to production of fortified flour and annually they will produce 1.9 million tones of fortified flour. Flour fortification will start on 29 July.