THE Government's food watchdog will consider recommending that folic acid be added to bread to reduce the number of babies born with spina bifida.
A spokeswoman for the Food Standards Agency said it was being put forward to its board when it meets tomorrow.
It is being asked to launch a consultation before advising ministers. A briefing paper for the meeting says talks with the bread and milling industry have taken place.
It indicates their preferred option would be to add folic acid to all flour except wholemeal at the milling stage. The document estimates the cost to industry at about £700,000 a year while warning there would be concerns about compulsory or mass medication issues.