Acceptance of a complementary food prepared with yellow, provitamin A-biofortified maize by black caregivers in rural KwaZulu-Natal
AbstractObjectives: The objective was to assess the sensory acceptability and consumer perceptions of soft porridge made with yellow, provitamin A-biofortified maize by black African female infant caregivers from rural KwaZulu-Natal.
Design: This was a cross-sectional study.
Setting: The study was conducted at Edendale Hospital, located in the uMgungundlovu District, KwaZulu-Natal province. The hospital serves a high proportion of people from rural areas in this district.
Subjects: Sixty black African female infant caregivers participated in the study.
Outcome measures: The sensory acceptability of soft porridge made from two varieties of provitamin-A biofortified maize and one variety of white maize were evaluated by black African female infant caregivers (n = 60) using a five-point facial hedonic scale. Some of the subjects (n = 21) participated in focus group discussions to assess consumer perceptions.
Results: There was no significant difference in the sensory acceptability of the biofortified maize porridge and the white maize porridge, irrespective of caregiver age (p-value > 0.05). The caregivers expressed a willingness to give their infants porridge made with provitamin A-biofortified maize if it was more affordable, readily available and beneficial to health.
Conclusion: The biofortified maize soft porridge was found to be as acceptable as the white maize soft porridge to black African female infant caregivers from rural KwaZulu-Natal. Provitamin A-biofortified maize has the potential to be used as a complementary food item that would contribute to the alleviation of vitamin A deficiency.
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