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On-farm food loss and waste is estimated to be 16% of the total agricultural-related greenhouse gas emissions globally, and reductions in these emissions have the potential to make a significant impact on climate change. There is a plethora of research being undertaken in this area across countries, food supply chains and stakeholders. However, differences in definitions, quantification methods, understanding of drivers and proposed solutions can be difficult to navigate. This narrative review provides a critical overview of the current research landscape of on-farm food loss and waste. The review has two objectives. Firstly, it provides a stock-take of on-farm food loss and waste definitions, quantification methods, causes and management options. Secondly, it provides researchers, policy makers and industry stakeholders with recommendations on opportunities to be pursued.
Dietary recalls have been used previously to identify food sources of iodine in Australian schoolchildren. Dietary assessment can provide information on the relative contributions of individual food groups which can be related to a robust objective measure of daily intake (24-h urinary iodine excretion (UIE)). In Australia, the government has mandated the use of iodised salt in breadmaking to address iodine deficiency. The aim of this study was to determine the dietary intake and food sources of iodine to assess their contribution to iodine excretion (UIE) in a sample of Australian schoolchildren. In 2011–2013, UIE was assessed using a single 24-h urine sample and dietary intake was assessed using one 24-h dietary recall in a convenience sample of primary schoolchildren from schools in Victoria, Australia. Of the 454 children with a valid recall and urine sample, 55 % were male (average age 10·1 (1·3 (sd) years). Mean UIE and dietary iodine intake were 108 (sd 54) and 172 (sd 74) μg/d, respectively. Dietary assessment indicated that bread and milk were the main food sources of iodine, contributing 27 and 25 %, respectively, to dietary iodine. Milk but not bread intake was positively associated with UIE. Multiple regression (adjusted for school cluster, age and sex) indicated that for every 100 g increase in milk consumption, there was a 3 μg/d increase in UIE (β = 4·0 (se 0·9), P < 0·001). In conclusion, both bread and milk were important contributors to dietary iodine intake; however, consumption of bread was not associated with daily iodine excretion in this group of Australian schoolchildren.
To alleviate the re-emergence of iodine deficiency in New Zealand, two strategies, the mandatory fortification of bread with iodised salt (2009) and a government-subsidised iodine supplement for breast-feeding women (2010), were introduced. Few studies have investigated mother and infant iodine status during the first postpartum year; this study aimed to describe iodine status of mothers and infants at 3, 6 and 12 months postpartum (3MPP, 6MPP and 12MPP, respectively). Partitioning of iodine excretion between urine and breast milk of exclusive breast-feeding (EBF) women at 3MPP was determined. In total, eighty-seven mother–infant pairs participated in the study. Maternal and infant spot urinary iodine concentration (UIC) and breast milk iodine concentration (BMIC) were determined. The percentage of women who took iodine-containing supplements decreased from 46 % at 3MPP to 6 % at 12MPP. Maternal median UIC (MUIC) at 3MPP (82 (46, 157) µg/l), 6MPP (85 (43, 134) µg/l) and 12MPP (95 (51, 169) µg/l) were <100 µg/l. The use of iodine-containing supplements increased MUIC and BMIC only at 3MPP. Median BMIC at all time points were below 75 µg/l. Infant MUIC at 3MPP (115 (69, 182) µg/l) and 6MPP (120 (60, 196) µg/l) were below 125 µg/l. Among EBF women at 3MPP, an increased partitioning of iodine into breast milk (highest proportion 60 %) was shown at lower iodine intakes, along with a reduced fractional iodine excretion in urine (lowest proportion 40 %), indicating a protective mechanism for breastfed infants’ iodine status. In conclusion, this cohort of postpartum women was iodine-deficient. Iodine status of their breastfed infants was suboptimal. Lactating women who do not consume iodine-rich foods and those who become pregnant again should take iodine-containing supplements.
Mandatory I fortification in bread was introduced in Australia in 2009 in response to the re-emergence of biochemical I deficiency based on median urinary I concentration (UIC)<100 µg/l. Data on the I status of lactating mothers and their infants in Australia are scarce. The primary aim of this study was to assess the I status, determined by UIC and breast milk I concentration (BMIC), of breast-feeding mothers in South Australia and UIC of their infants. The secondary aim was to assess the relationship between the I status of mothers and their infants. The median UIC of the mothers (n 686) was 125 (interquartile range (IQR) 76–200) µg/l and median BMIC (n 538) was 127 (IQR 84–184) µg/l. In all, 38 and 36 % of the mothers had a UIC and BMIC below 100 µg/l, respectively. The median UIC of infants (n 628) was 198 (IQR 121–296) µg/l, and 17 % had UIC<100 µg/l. Infant UIC was positively associated with maternal UIC (β 0·26; 95 % CI 0·14, 0·37, P<0·001) and BMIC (β 0·85; 95 % CI 0·66, 1·04, P<0·001) at 3 months postpartum after adjustment for gestational age, parity, maternal secondary and further education, BMI category and infant feeding mode. The adjusted OR for infant UIC<100 µg/l was 6·49 (95 % CI 3·80, 11·08, P<0·001) in mothers with BMIC<100 µg/l compared with those with BMIC≥100 µg/l. The I status of mothers and breast-fed infants in South Australia, following mandatory I fortification, is indicative of I sufficiency. BMIC<100 µg/l increased the risk of biochemical I deficiency in breast-fed infants.
To estimate the folate status of New Zealand women of childbearing age following the introduction, in 2010, of a new voluntary folic acid fortification of bread programme.
The 2011 Folate and Women’s Health Survey was a cross-sectional survey of women aged 18–44 years carried out in 2011. The survey used a stratified random sampling technique with the Electoral Roll as the sampling frame. Women were asked about consumption of folic-acid-fortified breads and breakfast cereals in a telephone interview. During a clinic visit, blood was collected for serum and erythrocyte folate measurement by microbiological assay.
A North Island (Wellington) and South Island (Dunedin) city centre in New Zealand.
Two hundred and eighty-eight women, of whom 278 completed a clinic visit.
Geometric mean serum and erythrocyte folate concentrations were 30 nmol/l and 996 nmol/l, respectively. Folate status was 30–40 % higher compared with women of childbearing age sampled as part of a national survey in 2008/09, prior to the introduction of the voluntary folic acid bread fortification programme. In the 2011 Folate and Women’s Health Survey, reported consumption of fortified bread and fortified breakfast cereal in the past week was associated with 25 % (P=0·01) and 15 % (P=0·04) higher serum folate concentrations, respectively.
Serum and erythrocyte folate concentrations have increased in New Zealand women of childbearing age since the number of folic-acid-fortified breads was increased voluntarily in 2010. Consumption of fortified breads and breakfast cereals was associated with a higher folate status.
Adequate iodine is important during pregnancy to ensure optimal growth and development of the offspring. We validated an iodine-specific FFQ (I-FFQ) for use in Australian pregnant women. A forty-four-item I-FFQ was developed to assess iodine intake from food and was administered to 122 pregnant women at 28 weeks gestation. Iodine supplement use was captured separately at 28 weeks gestation. Correlation between iodine intake from food estimated using the I-FFQ and a 4 d weighed food record as well as correlation between total iodine intake and 24 h urinary iodine excretion (UIE), 24 h urinary iodine concentration (UIC), spot UIC and thyroid function were assessed at 28 weeks gestation. A moderate correlation between the two dietary methods was shown (r 0·349, P< 0·001), and it was strengthened with the addition of iodine supplements (r 0·876, P< 0·001). There was a fair agreement (k= 0·28, P< 0·001) between the two dietary measures in the classification of women as receiving adequate ( ≥ 160 μg/d) or inadequate ( < 160 μg/d) iodine intake from food, but the limits of agreement from the Bland–Altman plot were large. Total iodine intake was associated with 24 h UIE (β = 0·488, P< 0·001) but not with spot UIC. Iodine intake from food using the I-FFQ was assessed at study entry ( < 20 weeks gestation) in addition to 28 weeks gestation, and there was a strong correlation in iodine intake at the two time points (r 0·622, P< 0·001), which indicated good reproducibility. In conclusion, the I-FFQ provides a valid tool for estimating iodine intake in pregnant women and can be used to screen women who are at risk of inadequate intake.
To evaluate the reliability and relative validity of a semi-quantitative FFQ for assessing the habitual intake of multiple nutrients in New Zealand (NZ) adults over the past 12 months.
A 154-item FFQ was developed. After initial pre-testing, reliability was assessed using intra-class correlations. Relative validity was assessed by comparing nutrient intakes derived from the FFQ v. those from an 8 d diet record (8dWDR) collected over 12 months and selected blood biomarkers, using Spearman correlations. Supplementary cross-classification and Bland–Altman analyses were performed to assess validity of the FFQ v. the 8dWDR.
One hundred and thirty-two males and females aged 30–59 years who completed all FFQ and 8dWDR and provided a blood sample.
Reliability coefficients ranged from 0·47 for Ca to 0·83 for alcohol, with most values falling between 0·60 and 0·80. The highest validity coefficients for energy-adjusted data were observed for alcohol (0·74), cholesterol (0·65) and β-carotene (0·58), and the lowest for Zn (0·24) and Ca (0·28). For all energy-adjusted nutrients mean percentage correct classification was 77·9 % and gross misclassification was 4·5 %. Results of Bland–Altman analyses showed wide limits of agreement for all micronutrients but high agreement was observed for most macronutrients (99 % for protein, 103 % for total fat). When compared with biomarkers, energy-adjusted coefficients were 0·34 for β-carotene and 0·33 for vitamin C.
The FFQ provides highly repeatable measurements and good validity in ranking individuals’ intake, suggesting that it will be a useful tool to assess nutrient intake of NZ adults in future research.
Iodine deficiency has re-emerged in many parts of the world including the UK, Australia and New Zealand (NZ). In 2009, the NZ government introduced the mandatory fortification of bread with iodised salt as a strategy to improve iodine intakes. The aim of the present study was to assess the impact of fortification on the iodine status of NZ schoolchildren. A school-based cluster survey was used to randomly select schools from two NZ cities. Children aged 8–10 years were administered a general questionnaire, and asked to provide a casual urine and finger-prick blood sample. The median urinary iodine concentration (UIC) of the children (n 147) was 113 μg/l, which falls between 100 and 199 μg/l indicating adequate iodine status; 12 % of children had a UIC < 50 μg/l and 39 % had a UIC < 100 μg/l. The median serum thyroxine concentration was 115 nmol/l. The median serum thyroglobulin (Tg) concentration was 10·8 μg/l and falls in the 10·0–19·9 μg/l range indicative of mild iodine deficiency, suggesting that these children still had enlarged thyroid glands. When compared with the median UIC of 68 μg/l reported in the 2002 NZ Children's Nutrition Survey, the UIC of children in the present study had increased, which is probably caused by the addition of iodised salt to bread. However, the elevated concentration of Tg in these children suggests that the increase in UIC is not sufficient to ensure that thyroid volume has normalised. The fortification of other staple foods, in addition to bread, should be considered to ensure good iodine status in NZ children.
Elevated plasma total homocysteine (tHcy) is a risk factor for vascular disease but lowering tHcy with B-vitamins, including folate, has generally not reduced vascular events in secondary prevention trials. Elevated plasma S-adenosylhomocysteine (AdoHcy) concentration may be a more sensitive indicator of vascular disease than plasma tHcy. However, unlike tHcy, plasma AdoHcy did not correlate with folate concentration in one study indicating that folate supplementation may not lower AdoHcy. Our aim was to determine whether providing B-vitamin supplements to healthy older people with elevated tHcy (>13 μmol/l) affects plasma AdoHcy and S-adenosylmethionine (AdoMet) concentrations. Healthy older participants (n 276; ≥ 65 years) were randomised to receive a daily supplement containing folate (1 mg), vitamin B12 (500 μg) and vitamin B6 (10 mg), or placebo, for 2 years. Of these participants, we selected the first fifty participants in each treatment group and measured plasma AdoHcy and AdoMet. Plasma tHcy was 4·4 (95 % CI 3·2, 5·6; P < 0·001) μmol/l lower at 2 years in the vitamins group compared with the placebo group. At 2 years, there were no significant differences in plasma AdoMet (+4 % (95 % CI − 2, 11); P = 0·19), AdoHcy ( − 1 % (95 % CI − 10, 8); P = 0·61) or the AdoMet:AdoHcy ratio (0·22 (95 % CI − 0·04, 0·49); P = 0·10) between the two groups. In conclusion, B-vitamin supplementation of older people lowered plasma tHcy but had no effect on plasma AdoMet or AdoHcy concentration. If elevated plasma AdoHcy is detrimental, this may explain why B-vitamins have generally failed to reduce vascular events in clinical trials.
To assess the iodine status of Sherpa residents living in Kunde village, Khumbu region, Nepal.
Prevalence of goitre was determined by palpation. Urinary iodine concentrations (UIC) were determined in casual morning samples, and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) in finger-prick blood samples on filter paper. Dietary and demographic data were obtained via questionnaire, and selected foods analysed for iodine.
Khumbu region is an area of low soil iodine in Nepal, where the prevalence of goitre was greater than 90 % in the 1960s prior to iodine intervention.
Two hundred and fifteen of 219 permanent residents of Kunde were studied.
Overall prevalence of goitre was 31 % (Grade 1 goitre, 27·0 %; Grade 2, 4·2 %). When adjusted to a world population, goitre prevalence was 27 % (95 % CI 23, 32 %); Grade 2 goitre prevalence was 2·8 % (95 % CI 1·0, 4·6 %). Median UIC was 97 μg/l, but only 75 μg/l in women of childbearing age. Thirty per cent had UIC < 50 μg/l and 52 % had UIC < 100 μg/l, while 31 % of children aged <14 years had UIC > 300 μg/l. Ten per cent of participants had TSH concentrations >5 μU/ml.
The prevalence of severe iodine deficiency has decreased since the 1960s, but mild iodine deficiency persists, particularly in women of childbearing age. The consumption of high-iodine uncooked instant noodles and flavour sachets by school-aged children contributed to their low prevalence of goitre and excessive UIC values. This finding may obscure a more severe iodine deficiency in the population, while increasing the risk of iodine-induced hyperthyroidism in children. Ongoing monitoring is essential.
To investigate the role of blood loss and diet in the aetiology of mild iron deficiency (MID) in premenopausal New Zealand women. Mild iron deficiency was defined as low, but not necessarily exhausted, iron stores (i.e. serum ferritin <20 μg/L) in the absence of anaemia (i.e. haemoglobin ≥120 g/L).
Cross-sectional study of a volunteer sample of premenopausal adult women. Information on habitual dietary intakes (using a specially designed and validated computerised iron food frequency questionnaire), health and demographic status, sources of blood loss (including menstrual blood loss estimated using a validated menstrual recall method), contraceptive use, height and weight, haemoglobin, serum ferritin and C-reactive protein were collected.
Dunedin, New Zealand during 1996/1997.
Three hundred and eighty-four women aged 18–40 years.
The characteristics that were associated with an increased risk of MID were: low meat/fish/poultry intake, high menstrual blood loss, recent blood donation, nose bleeds, and low body mass index. The protective factors included shorter duration of menstrual bleeding, and multivitamin–mineral supplement use in the past year.
There are a number of potentially modifiable factors that appear to influence risk of MID. Women with low menstrual blood loss may be able to decrease their risk of MID by increasing their meat/fish/poultry intake, while those with a higher menstrual blood loss may be able to decrease their risk by decreasing their menstrual blood loss, perhaps by changing their method of contraception. Women should be encouraged to maintain a healthy body weight, and those who choose to donate blood, or who experience nose bleeds, should have their iron stores monitored.
To investigate food sources and intakes of iron, and dietary factors associated with serum ferritin levels in 6–24-month-old children.
A cross-sectional survey employing proportionate cluster sampling was conducted in 1998/1999. Dietary intakes were assessed using a non-consecutive 3-day weighed food record. Serum ferritin and C-reactive protein were analysed from non-fasting venepuncture blood samples and general sociodemographic data were collected.
Cities of Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill, New Zealand.
Randomly selected healthy 6–24-month-old non-breast-feeding children (n=226).
Total iron intakes (±standard deviation (SD)) among non-breast-feeding infants (<12 months old; n=42) and toddlers (≥12 months old; n=184) were 8.4±2.9 mg day−1 and 5.0±2.5 mg day−1, respectively. Fifteen per cent of infants and 66% of toddlers were at risk of inadequate iron intakes. Main sources of dietary iron were infant formula (60%) for infants and cereals (31%) for toddlers. Meat contributed on average 2% and 10% of dietary iron in the infant and toddler diets, respectively. Dietary factors positively associated with serum ferritin were intakes of iron and vitamin C, whereas intakes of calcium and dietary fibre were negatively associated. For each 1% increase in percentage of energy from iron-fortified formula concomitant with a 1% decrease from dairy products, there was a 4.2% increased odds of replete iron stores (ferritin ≥20 μg l−1).
Toddlers were at higher risk of sub-optimal iron intakes than infants. Results suggest that a diet high in bioavailable iron is important for optimising the iron stores of young children in New Zealand.
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