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Tackling Hidden Hunger

SOUTH-EAST ASIA MEETING ON Flour Fortification

MEDIA INVITATION

What:     Media Briefing & Luncheon

When:    Wednesday, 22 August 2007 * 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm

Where:   Sheraton Subang, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Who:      Mr. Kul Chandra Gautam, Deputy Executive Director,
               United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
               Mr. Glen Maberly, Professor, Rollins School of Public
               Health, Emory University
               Mr. Greg Harvey, Group Chief Executive,
               Interflour Group

Why:
Children are not starving to death in this region—but they are dying because they are under-nourished. So are their mothers. They are not getting the vitamins and minerals that are crucial to fight off infection and disease.

Half of all deaths of children younger than 5 relate to their under-nutrition, and 50,000 women globally die during childbirth because they are severely anaemic, or iron deficient. Lack of folates, a B vitamin, causes some 200,000 severe birth defects among children each year and is associated with one in ten heart disease-related deaths among adults. Micronutrient deficiencies also impair intellectual development and keep millions of people from their physical and mental potential.

These numbers could be dramatically reduced with a simple process that typically occurs in developed countries: fortifying flour products with the crucial vitamins and minerals.

From 18-23 August, 70 delegates from the flour industry, along with public health experts and government officials, are meeting to explore how they can create an enabling regulatory and business environment for mandatory flour fortification to succeed in the region.

We wish to invite you to a lunch with UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Kul Guatam, who will brief you on the region’s hidden hunger and discuss why food fortification can play a crucial role in combating poverty and poor nutrition.

Please join us. 
Confirm your attendance soon as seating is limited.
To attend, please call UNICEF Malaysia at (03) 2095 9154.

________________________________________

Key Speakers

Kul Chandra Gautam
Deputy Executive Director of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
Mr. Kul Chandra Gautam is currently Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations and Deputy Executive Director of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) at its Headquarters in New York.  He is responsible for providing leadership in strategic planning, program development, resource mobilisation, and promoting partnerships for children and development among UN agencies, donors and civil society organisations. Mr. Gautam has had a long and distinguished career with UNICEF.  Starting in 1973, he served as Program Officer in Cambodia and Indonesia, as UNICEF Country Representative in Laos, Haiti, and India, and as Regional Director for Asia and Pacific. He also served as Chief for Latin America and the Caribbean, as Director for Planning, and Director of Program Division at UNICEF Headquarters in New York.

Glen Maberly
Coordinator Flour Fortification Initiative, & Professor – Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University

Glen Maberly has a distinguished career in public health.  His work has focused on building public-private-civic sector alliances to support the elimination of micronutrient malnutrition with a special focus on food fortification. Highlights along that road have included planning: 1994 PAMM Follow-up Workshop on Food Fortification Forum in the Netherlands; 1995 Sharing Risk and Reward - Food Fortification Forum in Canada; 2000 Manila Forum - Strategies to Fortify Essential Foods in Asia and the Pacific, and most recently, developing and coordination of the Flour Fortification Initiative.

Note to Editors:

The First FFI Regional Flour Fortification Workshop for East and South East Asia is being jointly hosted by Flour Fortification Initiative, UNICEF and Interflour. For background information on the workshop: www.sph.emory.edu/wheatflour. For information about the ASEAN Food Conference: http://www.afc07.upm.edu.my/index.html

Flour Fortification Initiative – A Public–Private Civic Investment: FFI is a network of individuals and organisations working together to make fortification of flour produced by large roller mills standard practice. FFI Leaders group has committed to achieving 70 per cent fortification of roller mill wheat flour with at least iron and folic acid by 2008.

UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence.  The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS.  UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

Media Enquiries:

Shantha Bloemen, UNICEF East Asia and Pacific; +66 8 1906 0813, sbloemen@unicef.org

Roby Hill, Flour Fortification Initiative; +1-843-406-7629, roby_rhill@bellsouth.net

Indra Nadchatram, UNICEF Malaysia; (+6) 013 366 3452, inadchatram@unicef.org

 

 
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