Enriching Flour, Enriching Lives: The Flour Fortification Initiative

11. Process Naturally Adaptable
The milling process is naturally disposed to fortification. As flour is produced and collected in flour conveyors, the required nutrients in dry powder form can be introduced and well mixed with the flour while it is carried over to flour scales and / or other equipment en route to flour bins. The only additional equipment required is a powder feeder. In many cases powder feeders may already be present for the addition of powder additives for improving flour functionality.
Fig. 105: Continuous flour fortification in the mill

Fig. 105 is a diagram of a modern flour mill. The general configuration of most flour mills follows the same operating sequence. There are flour mills in many parts of the world that may not necessarily have a comprehensive wheat storage and flour handling system, but all flour mills have a basic wheat preparation, milling and flour handling system. The two main areas of a flour mill from a fortification point of view are the milling section and the flour blending and homogenizing system. Although not every flour mill in the world has a comprehensive blending and homogenizing capability, there are a number of countries which do not currently fortify flourbut where such facilities are to be found and which are therefore technologically prepared for fortification. Even if a flour mill does not have such a facility it can always use the flour collecting conveyor in the milling section to add the nutrients. A reasonable mixing occurs in the flour conveyor, and potential for further mixing is increased with the use of an entoleter for infestation control and in further passage to flour bins through pneumatic lines under positive pressure.

Flour blending and homogenizing systems will be examined more closely in a later section. A large and modern mill that is required to cater to a diversified customer base with flour of consistent quality prepared according to a specific recipe requires a comprehensive flour blending and homogenizing facility. Such a facility comes with a macro and micro ingredient dispensing system and a good mixing and turnover system for flour homogenizing. This serves as an ideal system for flour fortification.

12. Large Scale of Production
The recommended minimum size of a flour mill is approximately 50 metric tons of wheat milling capability in 24 hours. This figure is based on an efficient capacity utilization relationship between various principal pieces of milling equipment, such as roller mills, purifiers and sifters. From a technical point of view, therefore, capacities lower than this would mean under-utilization of some of the equipment. In order to achieve economies of scale the capacities have to be much higher, and the capacities of most mills are normally greater than 50 tons per day. Therefore it is logical to fortify flour in a few large-capacity production facilities such as flour mills rather than in numerous smaller secondary processing facilities such as small bakeries or noodle shops.


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