More Options Now Available for Rice Fortification

US rice-bags-with American flag being unloaded from a ship
Food aid gets a boost
Nov 08, 2017
HOUSTON, TX – Key stakeholders and decision makers in U.S. food aid policy recently determined that rinse resistant coated fortified rice is similar in nutrient delivery to extruded fortified rice.  While extruded fortified rice is already available for use in global food assistance programs, implementing agencies can expect to see a revised commodity requirements document for both kinds of fortified rice no later than January 2018.  

USA Rice has worked closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the World Food Programme (WFP) to fully incorporate fortified rice into U.S. food assistance programs, and the addition of rinse resistant coating will ensure greater supply and economies of scale for rice in food aid.

As rice is the most consumed food in the world, all U.S. food assistance agencies and WFP have made it clear that their best option to reduce the impact of poverty is to invest in rice.  This year, six of the eight McGovern Dole School feeding programs are using fortified rice in Asia, Latin America, and Africa.  

“The tonnage of rice used in all U.S. global food assistance programs has grown over the past three years to more than 100,000 MT in 2017.  The fortified rice tonnage has started to grow this past year with about 25,000 MT in call forwards on the books,” said USA Rice Food Aid Subcommittee Chairman Bobby Hanks.  “We anticipate the policy changes agreed to will lead to increased tonnage of fortified rice in 2018 and beyond, and are grateful for the ongoing partnership with USDA and USAID.  The addition of a new technology and thus additional suppliers, means more options to procure fortified rice kernels and continual improvement of nutrient bioavailability with the ultimate goal of saving more lives.”