New Delhi: Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare released a comprehensive report on “Large Scale Food Fortification in India – The Journey So Far and Road Ahead” at the national ‘Conclave on Nutrition Security: Partnership & Convergence’ organized by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) on the occasion of World Food Day, here today. Shri Choubey also launched the food fortification website at the function. Smt. Preeti Sudan, Secretary, MoFPD and Secretary, MoHFW (Designate) and Smt. Vijaya Srivastava, Special Secretary and FA (MoHFW), were also present at the function.
Delivering the keynote address, Shri Choubey stated that it is not enough that the food is available but the food should be nutritious as well. He emphasized on the need to raise awareness about nutrition rich food and cautioned people against food adulteration.
At the function, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India introduced its new initiative ‘Indian Food Recovery Alliance (IFRA)’ – A coalition of food recovery partners in country to fight the issue of hunger and also prevent food loss and food wastage in India.
The food recovery partners showcased their existing models of food recovery and showcased an integrated web-based platform that is being developed. This web based platform, released on a pilot level, allows interested donors, individuals and volunteers to register themselves to be a part of this initiative. The donors will be able to track all the data, information and the status of the food they donate through their personal logins. This platform will also provide guidance to citizens, food businesses and various food recovery agencies on prevention of food loss and food waste, and safe recovery of surplus food.
During the conclave, FSSAI also discussed & reviewed the progress on food fortification so far, shared the experiences and key leanings and convened various stakeholders to discuss the way forward. Directives have been issued from the key Central Ministries and dynamic State government like Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and UT Chandigarh have set up cross ministerial working groups. Development partners have pledged support with resources.
Through creating a network of networks from entities across sectors in India and leveraging the power of technology, FSSAI’s aim is to create an ease of communication among all the stakeholders so that everybody can take a step closer towards reducing food wastage in a uniform direction. With respect to fortification, the next phase involves wide consumer outreach to build awareness and sensitise people to the need for fortification.
Also present at the function were Shri Ashish Bahuguna, Chairperson, FSSAI, Shri Pawan Agarwal, CEO, FSSAI, along with other senior officers of the Ministry and representatives of development partners and civil society organizations.