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Funding to Test Out Camp Level Milling and Fortification Equipment

The World Food Programme (WFP) have just secured funding to implement a pilot study to try out a 'containerised' milling unit at refugee camp level. This unit will also allow micro-nutrient fortification at camp level. The project will be a joint WFP/OXFAM/NRI initiative. If successful, the milling unit could lead to considerable cost-saving in refugee feeding operations. In many situations cereals cost between $300 and $400 per metric ton with an additional 20% of cereals being given to make up for refugee/IDP milling costs. This 20% amounts to $60~$80 for each metric ton of cereal consumed. It is estimated that milling at camp level using the newly developed unit would only cost $15 per metric ton. This amounts to a saving of up to $65 per metric ton of cereal.

Previous experience with milling units at camp level have shown that problems with operation were mainly related to lack of management and not to technical factors. The new approach being piloted will ensure adequate management of these milling units. However, suitable equipment has still to be developed and field tested for micronutrient fortification. If successful, this will reduce the need for micro-nutrient enriched blended food which is currently included in general rations for emergency-affected populations who are completely dependent upon external food aid. Also, a camp-level milling facility will save women a considerable amount of time. Time that would have been spent hand-pounding cereal can instead be allocated to other important activities. Another hoped for benefit of this unit is that it will allow micronutrient fortification to be tailored to local requirements.

For further information contact Pieter Djikhuizen, WFP, Via Cristoforo Colombo 426, 00145 Roma, Italy e-mail: Pieter.Dijkhuizen@wfp.org

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Funding to Test Out Camp Level Milling and Fortification Equipment. Field Exchange 5, October 1998. p12. www.ennonline.net/fex/5/funding

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