Fortifying migrant workers in SingaporeOn February 15, 2020 by Raul Dinwiddie
There is not enough healthy food. We eat 2 times only and there is no energy.
Everyday, we are always working. In our midst, there are about 350,000 workers
that are under nourished and this is not equitable in our country. Every human being loves food. Food is also a way for us to connect. So to think that something so basic
was being offered to the workers in ways that don’t fit the normative criteria
of what is acceptable food was really striking. Hidden Hunger is the lack of essential micronutrients,
essential vitamins and minerals. We have more than 2 billion people
who are affected by this. Fortified rice is a very good and cost effective strategy to bring the missing micronutrients and minerals to the plate. We add essential vitamins and minerals
to the rice – Post harvesting. So this is not GMO at all. It is completely natural. And we have this little vitamin beadlets
made in the shape of rice kernels into normal rice. The beauty of the technology is that
it tastes the same, cooks the same and we don’t change the experience of eating the rice. So today we’re working only with one construction company. We only had 200 workers tasting the rice. So we asked, “How does this fit with your cultural context?”
They said it fits very nicely. This is similar to what one will cook at home. The texture was good,
the smell was good and the taste was good. From today, the hard work will start.
We have to engage other stakeholders – public and private, working with Ministry of Manpower,
working with construction companies and with caterers, to make sure that, fortified rice can find its way to the workers. People that need it the most.