LAHORE: Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and National Fortification Alliance (NFA) will arrange workshop in Lahore for laboratory staff and technicians of regional laboratories in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The workshop being held on April 20 and 21 will aim at strengthen the Quality Assurance and Quality Control capacity of the industry and regulatory monitoring authorities through the provision of training and equipment.

Participants from Public and Private sector laboratories and regulatory authorities of Pakistan and Afghanistan attending the workshop while experts from Bio-Analyte Germany (an international organization) to conduct the training course. The workshop is designed to enhance the skills and quality of analysis for testing minerals and vitamins in fortified foods.–Staff Reporter

 The participants and the experts will learn the analytical matrix for testing fortified food, especially salt, wheat flour and edible oil.

The National Nutrition Survey 2011 revealed, Pakistan has a high burden of under nutrition and malnutrition. Malnutrition has long-lasting detrimental effects on a child’s growth, learning and future productivity. Fortification of complementary staple foods with vitamins and minerals is an evidence-based effective public health intervention and helps to prevent the micronutrient deficiencies.

As in Pakistan fortification of Iodine in edible salt, Iron and folic acid in wheat flour and Vitamin A and D in oil and ghee programs are already in place or under development but due to insufficient or unreliable analysis of the fortified food products represents a significant risk of not delivering the intended health outcome. GAIN envisioned through the provision of training and equipment will enable the laboratory staff and technicians to test the sample and to confirm the adequately nutritious complementary foods Compliance. This initiative would play a significant role in improving the food safety situation in the region.

IQTIDAR GILANI