Grain Fortification Status in North, Central, and South America
Costa Rica and the United States are leaders in global grain fortification as they are the only countries with legislative requirements to fortify wheat flour, maize flour and rice.
Most countries in the Americas began wheat and maize flour fortification several decades ago. We encourage these countries to review their standards. The levels of vitamins and minerals may need to be revised, the fortification compounds used may need to be changed, or additional nutrients may need to be added to create a desired public health impact. World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations for wheat flour and guidelines for maize flour offer a starting point for these discussions.
Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama and the United States have mandatory fortification of rice. Additionally, Brazil and Venezuela have standards allowing for voluntary rice fortification. See WHO guidelines for fortifying rice to improve the nutrition of a population.
The countries in this region and the legislative status of grain fortification are listed below. In this region, Nicaragua reports that more than 50% of its industrially milled maize flour is fortified even though it is not mandatory.
Click on the country name for more information.