eCatalogue of indicators for micronutrient programmes

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Labelling of packaged fortified flour or flour products at retail outlets follows standards
This indicator provides information on documentation of whether the label on packaged wheat flour or maize flour, or food products made with fortified wheat or maize flour, includes all of the required information. Checking labels at retail outlets is typically part of regulatory monitoring activities.
The label informs users whether packaged wheat or maize flour, or food products made with wheat or maize flour, have been fortified, with what nutrients, and in what quantities. With proper labelling, the end user will know the contents and whether the product has been fortified.
The percentage of wheat or maize flour or flour products that conform to established national standards for labelling Numerator: the number of packaged fortified flour and fortified flour-based food products assessed at retail outlets in a given time period (e.g. one month) with the minimum required information on the label Denominator: the total number of all retail-outlet samples of packaged fortified flour and fortified flour-based food products assessed, in the same time period • Divide the numerator by the denominator. Multiply the result by 100 to convert the number into a percentage. Considerations for the calculations: • Verify which types of wheat flour, maize flour or food products made with wheat flour or maize flour fall under the scope of the fortification labelling standards. • Minimum fortification information that is required for the labels typically includes at least: • the brand of the product • the address of the responsible entity • the levels of the nutrients • the ingredient listing • the presence of the fortification logo, if one exists for the fortification programme. • Minimum requirements might vary by country. • This indicator can be used on multiple levels; aggregated per inspector, per brand, per retail outlet, per region, or per country.
commercial monitoring, health claims, label, nutrition facts, nutrition information, nutrition label, fortified flour, , fortified flour products, regulatory monitoring, retail monitoring
Food fortification
Delivery, implement
School age children, 12-23 months, 24-35 months, 36-47 months, 48-59 months, 6-11 months, Adolescents, Men, Other (not any of the above, post-menopausal women, elderly), Women of reproductive age
Copper, Folate, Iron, Niacin, Selenium, Vitamin A, Thiamine (vitamin B1), Vitamin B12, Riboflavin (vitamin B2), Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Zinc
Not all types of wheat or maize flour may require fortification with vitamins and minerals. Therefore, it is important to select only wheat or maize flour or food products that are made with the wheat or maize flour types that are supposed to be fortified. A plan describing the sampling of products in retail markets is determined before the actual inspection. The aim is to inspect samples from a variety of products and brands from different geographic locations, to understand and/or confirm whether labels appear adequate across multiple fortified products, brands and geographic locations.
It is easy to determine whether the packaging is properly labelled according to the country-specific criteria. If samples are tested in a laboratory, labelling gives the regulatory monitoring staff micronutrient levels to compare results against, in order to confirm the product contains what is on the label.
This indicator requires travel to multiple locations periodically for data collection, which involves human and financial resources. The nutrient profile of the product may not match the profile stated on the label. The label may be added as a paper label sewn to a flour sack, to comply with the regulation. This paper label may be lost once the sack is opened, making it impossible to evaluate.
In a country, as part of commercial monitoring, food inspectors visited 30 of the most popular retail outlets where consumers obtain their food. Using a pre-printed list of packaged bread that should contain fortified wheat flour, inspectors reviewed the label information from one package per outlet of each of the brands. Specifically, they focused on whether or not a fortification logo appeared on three brands of packaged breads made with fortified flour. For three brands A, B and C, at each outlet, fortification logos were present on the packaging of 30, 29, and 8 respectively, giving an overall total of 67 out of 90 breads with a logo. Brand A: 30/30 * 100 = 100% Brand B: 29/30 * 100 = 97% Brand C: 8/30 * 100 = 27% Overall: 67/90 * 100 = 74% of the packaged bread had proper labelling.
Allen L, de Benoist B, Dary O, Hurrell R, editors. Guidelines on food fortification with micronutrients. Geneva: World Health Organization and Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; 2006 (, accessed 30 October 2015).
© World Health Organization 2019