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Salt Fortification: Technology

India possesses sound technology to produce DFS which is stable, bioavailable, effective and safe. There are many technologies available to make DFS, prominent being the NIN technology and Micronutrient Initiative technology. Both are available in India and many iodised salt producers have access to the technologies and capability to produce DFS.

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has approved production of DFS by mixing iodized salt with either/or Ferrous Sulphate and Encapsulated Ferrous Fumarate. While producing DFS with Ferrous Sulphate, Sodium hexametaphosphate (SHMP) has been used as a stabilizer, Ferrous Fumarate has been encapsulated with Soya Stearin to prevent interaction between iodine and iron. DFS as a product is stable in both formulations, is indistinguishable in taste, color, and smell from regular salt and has been proved efficacious in addressing IDA and IDD.

DFS technology can be easily integrated with little modifications in existing iodized salt processing facilities by adding a ribbon blender to blend the iron compound to iodized salt to produce DFS.

Given limited commercialization of the product, the incremental cost per kilogram of salt on account of addition of iron remains unclear. It is however, anticipated that the increase in cost of DFS could be 20-50% greater than iodized salt per kilogram. There are commercial brands available which costs from INR 14 to 25 per kilogram of DFS.