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Sight and Life and WFP Supplement: Scaling up Rice Fortification in West Africa

In West Africa, the prevalence and impact of micronutrient deficiencies are significant, and anemia, vitamin A deficiency, and iodine deficiency remain of public health concern. For example, every country in the region is off-track to reach the World Health Assembly 2025 global nutrition target for anemia prevalence reduction (Global Nutrition Report, 2018). Fortified rice has the potential to reach 130 million people in 12 African countries, three-quarters of which are in West Africa, and help tackle micronutrient deficiencies.

This new Sight and Life supplement with WFP explains why fortifying rice with micronutrients can be part of an affordable, effective strategy to increase the intake of essential vitamins and minerals to reduce the prevalence of micronutrient malnutrition.

Following the previous supplements on Scaling Up Rice Fortification in Latin America (2017) and Scaling Up Rice Fortification in Asia (2015), this edition takes a closer look at the continent that has the largest per capita rice consumption after Asia, yet where micronutrient deficiencies remain unacceptably high.

Each article in this supplement is thought-provoking and focuses on micronutrient deficiencies in West Africa. The articles explore the opportunities and challenges around rice fortification and its potential role in improving dietary quality. The articles cover a wide range of issues, ranging from food availability and consumption in the region (Mawuli Sablah, Greg Garrett and Ibrahim's Parvanta) to a review of the progress and lessons learned from food fortification (Frederick Grant, Becky Tsang and Greg Garrett).

The Supplement is available in English and French on the Sight and Life website.

Scaling up Rice Fortification in West Africa

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