Andhra Pradesh

15.60 lakh MT of fortified rice to be procured by FCI

The Food Corporation of India (FCI) has chalked out plans to procure 15.60 lakh Metric Tonnes (MT) of fortified rice from Andhra Pradesh this year. Of this, six lakh MT would be procured during Kharif and 9.60 lakh MT would be procured during the Rabi season.

The Union Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution had launched a programme for distribution of fortified rice having three micronutrients — folic acid, iron and vitamin B-12 — to children and lactating mothers. As part of the programme, the FCI was asked to come up with a comprehensive plan to scale up the annual supply of fortified rice. Subsequently, the procurement plans were prepared.

FCI General Manager Amaresh Kumar said that a total target of 23.60 lakh MT of fortified rice would be procured from Andhra Pradesh. Of this, A.P. State Civil Supplies Corporation will procure 9.02 lakh MT. The remaining would be procured by the FCI.

While the fortified rice procured by the State Civil Supplies Corporation would be for the requirements of A.P., the FCI’s procurement is meant for other States.

FCI would supply the fortified rice to Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. The respective governments would distribute the fortified rice to high-burden districts (where vitamin and mineral deficiencies, anaemia and other defects were identified) in those States.

The FCI supplied fortified rice to 17 lakh children under the Mid-Day Meals (MDM) scheme and 55,607 Anganwadi centres under the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) for 2021-22 in A.P.

During the Kharif Marketing Season (KMS) 2021-22, five districts, including Vizianagaram, Kurnool, Chittoor, Visakhapatnam and Kadapa, were identified as aspirational/ high-burden districts in Andhra Pradesh.

Rice fortification is a major step towards achieving food security for lactating mothers and adolescent/young school-going children, Mr. Amaresh said. FCI Deputy General Manager (Quality Control) Sridevi sought to dispel rumours floating around that fortified rice was ‘plastic rice’.

“People should realise that there is no iota of truth to such rumours. Fortified rice involves grinding broken rice into powder, mixing it with nutrients and then shaping it into rice-like kernels using an extrusion process. These fortified kernels are then mixed with normal rice in a 1:100 ratio and then distributed for consumption. These rice-like kernels give an impression that they are plastic grains,” she said.


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Printable version | Jan 21, 2022 6:26:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/1560-lakh-mt-of-fortified-rice-to-be-procured-by-fci/article37590327.ece

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