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SBA Partners with Grain Foods Foundation

The Spina Bifida Association (SBA) is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Grain Foods Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the public's understanding of the important role grain-based foods play in a healthful diet. The scope of the project will include SBA’s participation in an ongoing broadcast PSA campaign beginning in 2012 during January’s National Birth Defects Prevention Month. The campaign encourages individuals to incorporate folic-acid-fortified grain foods into their diets.

The campaign originally began four years ago and, since then, it has aired 37,428 times, reaching 811.5 million viewers. Airings have increased year to year since its inception.

The campaign reminds all women of childbearing age of the important role folic acid plays in preventing birth defects like Spina Bifida. Daily consumption of the B vitamin folic acid, beginning before pregnancy, is crucial as neural tube defects like Spina Bifida can occur in the early weeks following conception, often before a woman knows she is pregnant.

What foods are important for prevention and why?
Bread, crackers, bagels, pasta, pretzels and tortillas made from fortified, enriched white flour are important sources of folic acid. Enriched grains are the primary source of folic acid in the diet of Americans.

Is there a target group?
Daily consumption of folic acid is important for all women of childbearing age particularly the Hispanic community, as Hispanic women are twice as likely as the rest of the population to have a baby born with a neural tube defect.

Because Hispanic women are more likely to have a child born with a neural tube defect, it is critical that they boost their folic acid intake before they get pregnant. Eating enriched grains – like white bread and tortillas - are an easy way to meet folic acid requirements.

“We are always looking for ways to get out our message of prevention, and this offers a perfect opportunity on a broad scale,” said Cindy Brownstein, CEO and President of the Spina Bifida Association.

“We are thrilled about the partnership with the Spina Bifida Association, and are confident the PSA will prove to be just one of many successful joint ventures,” said Judi Adams, president of the Grain Foods Foundation.

About the Grain Foods Foundation
The Grain Foods Foundation, a joint venture of members of the milling, baking, and allied industries formed in 2004, is dedicated to advancing the public’s understanding of the beneficial role grain-based foods play in the human diet. For more information about the Grain Foods Foundation, visit gowiththegrain.org, or find GoWithTheGrain on Facebook, Twitter, and Flickr.