Wheat or meslin flour (HS 1101); Bread, pastry, cakes, biscuits and other bakers' wares, whether or not containing cocoa; communion wafers, empty cachets of a kind suitable for pharmaceutical use, sealing wafers, rice paper and similar products (HS 1905)
Folic acid fortification: increasing folic acid availability in food
The New Zealand Government is considering changes to increase folic acid availability in food to further reduce neural tube defects such as spina bifida. Folic acid is the synthetic form of the B vitamin folate. Currently a voluntary approach applies.
The consultation document seeks feedback on (1) continuing with the current voluntary approach; (2) asking industry to enhance voluntary fortification of packaged sliced bread; and introducing mandatory fortification of all non-organic (3a) bread, (3b) wheat flour for bread-making purposes, or (3c) wheat flour regardless of its end purpose.
Under the mandatory folic acid fortification options, non-organic imported products (bread under option 3a, wheat flour for making-bread under option 3b, and wheat flour under option 3c) would also have to comply with the mandatory fortification requirements.
Similarly under the mandatory folic acid fortification options, non-organic exported products (bread under option 3a, wheat flour for making-bread under option 3b, and wheat flour under option 3c) may contain folic acid provided it is permitted in the destination country and meets commercial requirements. There is no international standard for folic acid fortification. The options provided in the consultation document adhere to Codex's general principles for the addition of essential nutrients to food.