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HarvestPlus’ new tool will help companies decide on crop investment

US-based agriculture research firm HarvestPlus has launched a new interactive online tool to help agricultural companies to decide where and in what kind of biofortified crops to invest

According to the company, Biofortification Priority Index (BPI) would allow user to enter search criteria through three easy-to-use dropdown menus.

The BPI is a composite, crop-specific index accounting for the intensity and level of production and consumption of a specific crop in any given country and the deficiency levels for the micronutrients with which the specific crop can be enriched.

They can sort and view results on a colour-coded map according to crop, region and priority for investment. The results are ranked based on a combination of production, consumption and micronutrient deficiency data, added HarvestPlus.

A spokesperson of HarvestPlus said, “The BPI will be useful to stakeholders in making investment decisions on biofortification that will have the highest pay off in reducing micronutrient deficiencies.

“The BPI comes at a time when biofortification is attracting increased recognition as a viable strategy to improve the nutritional status of populations dependent on staple food crops for sustenance.”

According to the BPI for each crop, countries with higher indices should be considered for prioritisation for biofortification interventions, stressed the spokesperson.