Development Partnership for Edible Oil Fortification

By Sue Adkins, International Director, Business in the Community

Development Partnership for Edible Oil Fortification

BASF, in partnership with BioAnalyt, helped to reduce vitamin and mineral deficiencies in people at risk in over 40 developing countries.

Social impacts

  • Over 114 million people at risk of vitamin A deficiency were reached with vitamin A fortified oil.
  • The development of two easy-to-use vitamin A test kits allowed successful national food fortification programmes.
  • 97 edible oil millers were trained in oil fortification, equipped with quality control test kits, and have started to fortify.
  • 126 public sector food and drug authority or Ministry of Health staff were trained in effective quality control.

Business impacts

  • BASF’s vitamin A customer base diversified beyond large customers in OECD countries, with demand increasing by over 100% in Bolivia, Tanzania and Indonesia.
  • BioAnalyt sales of consumables for test kits increased after the distribution of over 90 BioAnalyt test kits to government authorities and industry in Bolivia, Tanzania and Indonesia.
  • The companies gained estimated shared value benefits of 1.8 times the turnover created. Globally, more than two billion people suffer from deficiencies of vitamins and minerals. Vitamin A deficiency in particular has serious health impacts.

BASF set up a technical co-operation partnership with BioAnalyt, which develops and manufactures nutrient test kits, to support the fortification of staple foods (like edible oil and flour) in newly industrialised and underdeveloped countries.

Key to the project was the development of two portable, easy-to-use systems to measure micronutrient content in staple foods, such as vitamin A in oil. This allows compliance with food fortification standards and quality controls.

The partnership worked in Bolivia, Tanzania and Indonesia to provide the local food industry with technical training and access to quality vitamins. 114 million people in these countries now have affordable access to quality controlled vitamin A fortified oil.

What BASF SE’s Chairman and Board member said:

“Malnourishment is a serious problem in today’s world. Thus, BASF’s Food Fortification Initiative supports programmes of international organisations, governments, academia, civil society or private sector geared towards sustainably improving food and nutrition security.” – Kurt Bock, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors, BASF SE

“The long-term consequences of vitamin A deficiency for the people concerned range from a permanently weakened immune system to infectious diseases and blindness. The initiative has enabled us to improve the nutrition situation for many millions of people.” – Michael Heinz, Member of the Board of Executive Directors, BASF SE

Editor’s Note: This blog was previously published on Business in The Community and is reproduced with permission.

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