Friday, 9 October 2015

Consumers advised to eat foods enriched with micronutrients

Consuming food rich in nutrients such as soybeans have been identified as a way to build rich culture of good nutrition in diet.

The Managing Director and Chief Executive of Nestle Nigeria Plc, Chief Dharnesh Gordhon, reiterated this at a recent media tour at the company’s Agbara factory.

Gordhon noted that products from the stable of Nestle such as the Maggi food seasoning are enriched with soybean to help improve the quality of the good consumed.

Soybeans is described as the richest plant source of protein and the highest amongst all legumes as it contains 43 percent protein unlike other leguminous plants that contain 20 to 25 percent protein.

Under guidelines adopted by The World Health Organisation for evaluating protein quality for children and adults, soy beans is rated as first and second to none. This is to say soy bean is equal to the protein found in meat and milk.

“At Nestle we have a history of delivering regardless of the external environment, this is because of the strength of our brands, our consumer understanding and our programme of continuous innovation and renovation of our products to ensure they are the best products available in the market.

“Another way Maggi delights the consumer is by helping to reduce the risk of under- nutrition through micro nutrient fortification.”

Gordhon said: “Our work with Maggi focuses on tackling nutrient deficiencies with popular products aimed at those who need them most. Two examples of these nutrients are iodine and iron. Inadequate dietary iodine is a common and serious deficiency affecting one third of pre-school children in Nigeria. Lack of iodine is the major cause of preventable brain damage. Severe iodine deficiency during pregnancy can result in mental retardation of an infant or miscarriage.

“To help address the problem, we implemented relevant innovation especially targeting the needs of low-income consumers most likely to suffer from micronutrient deficiencies. In 2012, we introduced a new range of fortified bouillon cubes to Nigeria by adding, iron to the already iodine-fortified Maggi brand seasonings.

He added: “In 2014, we reached 18.3 million households in Nigeria with iron-fortified Maggi cubes. Each serving (that is a meal for 6 people prepared with six cubes or two tablets) provides for over 30 per cent of the recommended daily allowance of iodine and 15 per cent of the recommended daily allowance of iron.

“In addition to improving the nutritional value of our products by adding micronutrients, our Maggi product portfolio also promotes home cooking and consumption of vegetables through the Maggi Star Kitchen,” he added.


This story was published in Newswatch Times on September 19, 2015.

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