Special Issue Information
Biofortification is the process used to increase the concentration of a nutrient in edible portions of plants through agronomic techniques, post-harvest processes (i.e., malting), and genetic selection by plant breeding. Some soils in the Mediterranean area are poor in some minerals, and so are the plants that grow in these soils.
Low mineral concentrations are found in arid areas with high pH and low clay content, conditions which are quite prevalent in the Mediterranean area. An important part of the population suffers from dietary deficiency in essential micronutrients, i.e., iron (Fe), zinc (Zn) and selenium (Se), and a novel challenge in agriculture is the production of biofortified grains to improve the nutrition status of the consumers, while allowing the producers to offer a more valuable product.
In the future, grain biofortification should consider innovative approaches from field agronomics techniques to post-harvest methods in order to obtain dense grains for developing novel foods with improved properties on human health, also taking into account the stability of the products during long-term storage and the bioavailability of the microelements of the fortified products.