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Controlling the addition of vitamins and minerals to our foods (a process known as fortification) is one way that Health Canada ensures that Canadians receive the nutrients they need but are not exposed to levels that are dangerously high.
In March of 2005, Health Canada released a proposed policy and implementation plan for developing new food fortification regulations. The new policy continues current fortification practices which prevent and correct nutritional problems such as requiring the addition of Vitamin D to milk to combat the childhood deficiency-disease of rickets or the addition of folic acid to flour to reduce birth defects. Fortifying foods to restore vitamins and minerals lost through processing will also continue.
The policy would also give manufacturers the option to add vitamins and minerals to most foods (with some exceptions) at safe levels set by Health Canada. This would provide Canadians with more choices of fortified foods while continuing to protect people from consuming a potentially harmful amount of any specific vitamin or mineral.