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Folic acid will be added to most bread crumbs.

MONIQUE FORD / items

Folic acid will be added to most bread crumbs.

Folic acid will be added to baking flour to reduce birth defects a decade later, when doctors first urged the government to back down from politics.

The two-year policy envisions enriching non-organic wheat flour for bread with a move that the government says could prevent 162 to 240 neural tube defects – birth defects in the brain, spine or spine. for example, spinal bifida – more than 30 years.

“It’s about protecting babies. “Low levels of folic acid in mothers cause neural tube defects that can lead to neonatal death or lifelong disability,” said Dr. Ayesha Verall, Minister of Health.

Vitamin B will not be added to organic և non-wheat flour, which means that consumers will be able to avoid folic acid if they wish.

READ MORE:
* Should bread be fortified with folic acid?
* What you need to know about folic acid
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But the move comes more than a decade after doctors first expressed disappointment when plans to add folic acid to grain were delayed following industry opposition. One of the pediatricians said that the detention forced her to stop having an abortion in a classroom full of unborn babies.

It comes eight months after the Health and Safety Committee’s Perinatal և Maternal Mortality Review Committee urgently called for folic acid to be added to bread in 2013.

Veral said New Zealand’s neural tube defects are high compared to other countries that have a mandatory fixation approach, such as Australia, Canada and the United States.

New aland ելland currently has 10.6 neural tube defects per 10,000 births, compared with 8.7 in Australia.

“Slightly more than half of pregnancies are not planned in New ելland անդland, so it is not practical for all women to take folic acid supplements a month before pregnancy to reduce the risk of these conditions,” she said.

“The introduction of compulsory enrichment is a safe way to increase the use of folic acid in young women.”

The change is expected to save $ 25 million և 47 million over the same period in terms of economy, education and productivity costs. Flour mills will receive $ 1.6 million to purchase and install the necessary equipment.

The last Labor government took steps to introduce folic acid into bread, but they collapsed when the National came to power, and industry strongly opposed the move.

Australia went ahead, then added folic acid, saw a decrease in neural tube defects. After transplantation, the level of neural tube defects decreased by 14%.

Verall also took steps earlier this year to impose fluoride in drinking water across the country.

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