- all wheat flour (except wholemeal) produced in the UK is subject to legislation which requires calcium, iron, niacin and thiamin to be added at certain specified levels
- Folic acid factsheet – women wanting to be/pregnant –
- 1st reading of a bill to make mandatory in house of lords awaiting second reading – england wales and scotland http://services.parliament.uk/bills/2015-16/breadandflourregulationsfolicacid.html
– From 1991 to 2012, the prevalence of NTD pregnancies was 1.28 (95% CI 1.24 to 1.31) per 1000 total births (19% live births, 81% terminations and 0.5% stillbirths and fetal deaths ≥20 weeks’ gestation). If the USA levels of folic acid fortification from 1998 onwards had been adopted in the UK, an estimated 2014 fewer NTD pregnancies would have occurred.
- A recent paper assessing the extent of folic acid supplementation among almost half a million women in England has estimated that the proportion of women taking folic acid supplements declined from 39.6% in 1999 to 27.8% in 2012
- Harms of mandatory fortification
- Several studies both before and after fortification have examined this issue and concluded that, at current recommended intakes, there is little evidence of masking or exacerbation of neuropathies [61,62,63,64].http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12791626If confirmed, these results would indicate that food fortification has not caused a major increase in masking of vitamin B-12 deficiency
- Scotland’s Public Health Minister Maureen Watt said: “The Scottish government has been convinced of the case for mandatory fortification for some time. Folate levels are a concern across the UK, but particularly so in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
“We are disappointed that, despite repeated lobbying from a number of sources, there has been no progress at UK level on mandatory fortification of flour with folic acid.
“I have recently written again to the UK government to press for a decision on this important issue.
“I, along with my counterparts in Wales and Northern Ireland, will consider how we might progress this should a decision not be cost savings