GAIN – KHPT conducted a sensitisation programme for wheat and oil millers of the government run Supplyco which was held under the Chairperson of Supplyco MD Sri K N Satheesh IAS. Supplyco is the name that has been given to the Kerala State Civil Supplies Corporation which assures food security to 30 million people of the State of Kerala.
The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) was launched at the UN in 2002 to tackle the human suffering caused by malnutrition. KHPT stands for the Karnataka Health Promotion Trust (KHPT) which is a registered trust that helps to alleviate under- nutrition through nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive interventions.
The sensitisation programme was conducted at the Supplyco head office. It was well attended by about 30 Supplyco officials, while 13 attendees were from their seven wheat flour mills and three oil mills. Supplyco makes coconut oil under their Sabari brand besides other products like curry powder and other Indian spices. All stakeholders of Supplyco were brought together to understand the challenges the state is facing regarding fortification of their food supplies.
The sensitisation programme also discussed ways to scale up the fortification of staples in the Supplyco net. A roadmap for introducing fortification of wheat flour, edible oil and milk in Kerala was also a part of the agenda. The programme highlighted the importance of bringing these fortified foods to the people through the public funded programmes with help of the state government agency like Supplyco.
There was a need felt that if Supplyco can provide fortified staples at their stores then fortification will be able to reach a larger section of people that required the nutrition. It was suggested that coconut must be preferred oil for fortification as it the most extensively used in Kerala. Supplyco already supplies fortified wheat flour through public distribution system but they would expand the volumes and so the flour millers would need to provide more fortified wheat flour to Supplyco. For oil, the three millers would initiate fortification and this would be supplied to different departments through Supplyco. Beside these food commodities, rice is another commodity that Supplyco intends to fortify as it is also a staple food of Kerala and would help elevate nutrition levels.