DILI, 11 october, 2021 (TATOLI)- Ministry of Tourism, Trade, and Industry (MTCI) conducted the National Consultation on Food Fortification laws with competent ministry and partners to collect the input and obtain findings on major contributions to technical aspects referring to the required nutritional value.
MTCI Deputy Minister, Domingos Lopes Antunes said, the elaboration of the food fortification law must ensure the adjustment from the Minister of Health which gives maximum contribution to technical aspects: “This ensures the food must value on cleanliness and safety for public consumption,”
Antunes said once this law is approved by the President of the Republic, all contributions and support from relevant entities are required for food fortification.
“The government acts as a facilitating agent in providing infrastructure and designing programs for community welfare. The Government of Timor-Leste through the council of ministers has approved Timor-Leste’s adjustment to the global Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement since SUN already has 60 registered member countries,” MTCI Deputy Minister Domingos Lopes Antunes told reporters at the Timor Hotel Meeting Room, this Monday.
World Food Program (WFP) Country Director, Dangeng Liu said that UNFWP stands on a commitment to provide technical support and advice to assist the Timor-Leste government in improving nutritious food.
He added that WFP has the policy to encourage Timorese farmers to increase local production and ensure foods contain vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, and nutrients to minimize the number of malnutrition in Timor-Leste.
“WFP guarantees an increase in food in the country to avoid imported food that is malnourished and even contributes to malnutrition,” said Liu.
The Director-General of Cooperatives, the Minister of Health, Marcelo Amaral, said that the Minister of Health plays an important role in ensuring that food is safe and secure for everyone to consume daily.
Amaral recommends for all entities to increase nutritious food in the food fortification program to ensure that food must be suitable for public consumption, especially providing food for children at school to be consumed must be healthy and contain nutrition.
Food intensification, scaling up the program and food inspection are to avoid unhygienic food supply at the community level. The contribution of malnutrition is very large;”Currently the data shows that women aged 15-49 suffer from anemia 38.9% and children 6-23 months also suffer from anemia 63.2%, Diet diversification for women and children in Timor-Leste in (TLFNS 2020) showed 65.4% in 5 to 10 food groups and children’s diet received a minimum of 34.5%.” he said.
Journalist: José Belarmino De Sá
Editor: Nelia Borges Rosario