Action - Nutrition International - India - Wheat flour fortification

Programme: Nutrition International - India

Programme description

Food Fortification is the addition of vitamins and minerals to staple foods like rice and wheat to prevent micronutrient deficiencies,strengthen immune systems and nurture a healthy and productive next generation. It is a cost effective strategy to deliver key micronutrients to a large population. Fortifying commonly-eaten grains such as wheat, maize flour and rice is among the easiest and least expensive ways to prevent disease, strengthen immune systems and nurture a healthy and productive next generation.[1] Nutrition International leads and supports grain fortification efforts in low- and middle – income countries through a number of programs. Fortifying grains with iron and folic acid is an effective way to prevent anaemia and neural tube defects in a population.[2]

In August 2018, the government published new standards for mass food fortification, including high-extraction atta wheat flour. The Government of India also recommends the introduction of food fortification in its existing social safety net programs as a strategy to improve nutrition and address micronutrient deficiencies among the population. 

In India, Nutrition International is providing technical support to the Gujarat Roller Flour Millers Association through the following activities, as an efforts to introduce fortified wheat flour into the open market:

  • Conducted an industry assessment to understand the capacity of roller flour millers to produce fortified wheat flour and to assess the preparedness of the distribution channel.
  • Developed a training module on the production and QA/QC process for fortifying wheat flour.
  • Developed a Behaviour Change Communication strategy and communication prototypes on the benefits of fortified wheat flour. These prototypes were developed to be customized by millers for their brand.
  • Supported the Gujarat Roller Flour Miller’s Association to set up a laboratory to monitor the quality of fortified wheat flour produced by the millers.
  • Continued advocacy for an enabling policy environment for the introduction of fortified wheat flour through social safety programs of the state.

These activities are being implemented in partnership with the Gujarat Roller Flour Millers Association and Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, Government of India.

In 2017, 29,732 MTs of additional adequately fortified wheat flour was produced by NI-supported millers which would benefit 561,398 individuals. NI has provided long-standing support to food fortification in India.

Programme type



  1. Why Fortify Flour and Rice? (n.d.). Retrieved from
  2. Fisberg, M., & Tosatti, A. M. (2011). Enrichment of iron and folic acid. Revista Brasileira De Hematologia E Hemoterapia,33(2), 94-95. doi:10.5581/1516-8484.20110026

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