UK's move to fortify flour with folic acid to help prevent birth defects hailed
Folic acid will be added to non-wholemeal wheat flour across the UK to help prevent life-threatening spinal conditions in babies.
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Food Labelling Services comments:
Adding folic acid will mean foods made with flour, such as bread, will actively help avoid around 200 neural tube defects each year – around 20% of the annual UK total. Since the Second World War, flour has been fortified with calcium, iron, niacin and thiamin during milling to support the nation’s health. This announcement joins 80 countries, such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, adding folic acid to staple food products to help reduce neural tube defects.Wholemeal flour and gluten-free foods are not subject to mandatory fortification and these products are not in the initial scope of this policy. Wholemeal flour has more naturally occurring folate than non-wholemeal wheat flour, and some wholemeal and gluten-free foods are already voluntarily fortified with folic acid in the UK.