National Food and Nutrition Commission (NFNC) says it will continue enforcing its policy of fortifying sugar with Vitamin A. Reacting to the Parliamentary Committee on Economic and Labour Affairs call to government to change the policy in order to enhance the competitiveness of the Zambia sugar industry, NFNC acting Executive Director Freddie Mubanga said fortification is meant to curb high levels of micro-nutrition deficiency in the country.
He said micro- nutrition deficiency was a complex situation which needed multiple approaches to be dealt with and that there was no need to trivialize the situation.
Mr. Mubanga explained that sugar fortification was a short-term measure to bring down the high levels of vitamin A deficiency common in children under the age of five and reproductive women.
He said other measures were promotion of exclusive breast feeding for the first six months and diet diversification and prevention of diseases that depleted vitamin A in the body.
Mr. Mubanga said the high price of sugar was not being caused by the cost of fortification as prices had been high even before the policy was implemented.
He added that measures to combat micro- nutrition deficiency also contributed to reduction in infant mortality rates and that there was need to invest more in nutrition as it had effects on the country’s economy.