31 October 2017 // Last week, on the 24th of October, it was exactly 15 years since the Food Fortification Initiative (FFI) was launched, then known as the Flour Fortification Initiative. To celebrate the anniversary, FFI has honoured 15 fortification champions from different sectors and different parts of the world. These champions have done an excellent job representing the partnership throughout the years, which has influenced the increase of countries with wheat flour fortification mandates. In 2002, 46 countries had such mandates and in 2017 we watched the number rise to 87 countries with legislation to fortify wheat flour, maize flour, and/or rice. IF is proud to be on the Executive Management Team of FFI and very pleased with this remarkable result!

Giulia Bizzotto graduated30 October 2017 // Congratulations to Giula Bizzotto! During her time as an intern at IF, Giula researched the relationship between assistive technology and the human body, with a special focus on people with Spina Bifida and their rights. She received full marks with honours for her dissertation, which was based on her research at IF. A big thank you to everyone who answered her questionnaire! A worrying conclusion is that the costs of assistive technology are a burden for people with Spina Bifida and families with children with Spina Bifida. Giulia compared data from IF's member ASBI in Italy to the results of other IF members from various European countries.

women children spina bifida hydrocephalus27 October 2017 // This Saturday, October 28, marks the 1st anniversary of the launch of IF’s Global Prevention Initiative (IFGPI). The prevention of folic acid preventable Neural Tube Defects (NTDs) and Hydrocephalus presents us with a worldwide challenge that we all share, and the goal of the IFGPI is to improve awareness and global action. Over the past year we have been working to develop both national and international networks, promote mandatory fortification with folic acid, increase knowledge and understanding of prevention measures, and increase accessibility to key educational information.

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