BASF, EDCEL launch vitamin A premix for edible oils fortification
BASF West Africa has partnered with EDCEL Limited to launch the Vitamin A premix for edible oils which will give millers under the Small and Medium Scale (MSMEs) enterprise access to an affordable pack size of Vitamin A with which they can fortify edible oils irrespective of the quantities being produced.
According to BSAF, this is an innovative solution because the edible oil industry in Nigeria is highly fragmented with small millers who are responsible for more than 60 percent of its production, this has caused the industry to lag behind in attaining approved compliance levels for fortification.
Speaking at the product launch, Jean-Marc Ricca, Managing Director, BASF West Africa said, this will also support the food fortification agenda of the Nigerian government as lack of micronutrients in children and young adults daily diets heightens vulnerability to diseases and increases risk of death.
“With this innovation, Nigeria can look forward to improved statistics in reducing malnutrition and the elimination of hidden hunger particularly at the base of the income pyramid while production activities of MSMEs improve,” he said.
He added that micro millers lack necessary machineries such as the dosing equipment and analytical test equipment as they are quite costly and require specialized technical skills to operate, however BSAF’s ability to offer technical and analytical services for all large and small scale millers across the country will address this deficit.
Ricca added that BASF’s food fortification efforts aim to realize five UN Sustainable Development Goals which are zero hunger, good health and wellbeing, reduced inequalities, decent work and economic growth, and partnerships for the goals.
“In developing countries such as Nigeria, a large section of the population has poor access to eggs, fish, dairy products, colourful produce and fortified cereals hence the CEED Vitamin A premix is set to address micronutrient deficiency of Vitamin A and Vitamin D through the fortification of edible oil, a primary ingredient in many food end-products, ” Cletus Chibuko, Managing Director, EDCEL Limited said.
He said that combating malnutrition through food fortification is critical for long term development and many countries across the region of Africa implements fortification in food processing, which can be achieved together by industry, government development leaders and individuals.