Equity in access to fortified maize flour and corn meal.
Bottom Line: Micronutrient malnutrition is unevenly distributed among population groups and is importantly determined by social factors, such as living conditions, socioeconomic position, gender, cultural norms, health systems, and the socioeconomic and political context in which people access food.Efforts trying to make fortified foods accessible to the population groups that most need them require acknowledgment of the role of these determinants.Key monitoring areas and issues to consider in order to expand and guarantee a more equitable access to maize flour and corn meal are described.
Affiliation: Universidad Pública de Navarra, Pamplona, Spain.Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus
Mentions: Access to fortified maize flour and corn meal is socially determined, as it is the result of several determinants operating at different domains (Fig. 1); similarly, the distribution of such access across the social gradient is also socially determined. The reasons why some population groups are more or less likely to access fortified maize flour and corn meal, and why inequities in access persist, are varied and often not well documented. Research on other types of fortified flour, such as wheat flour, suggests that in some settings, fortification is unlikely to benefit the neediest.26 Determining whether this is also the case for fortified maize flour first requires identification of the barriers that prevent equitable access in different fortification contexts. The following section proposes a framework to identify these barriers.