The iodine industry came together in November to tackle the
challenges of the iodine industry, such as a coordinated
approach to the prevention of iodine deficiency disorders
(IDD) and the need for harmonized regulations for iodine
intake per person.
Higher consumption of iodine through the consistent
regulation of iodine intake per person across Europe and other
regions could result in an increase in iodine demand, and could
consequently push iodine prices upward.
"If we take into account the minimum recommended amount of
iodine intake per day for adults of 150 mcg (micrograms),
stated by the experts, the creation of a common policy across
European countries to promote similar levels of intake per
person would definitely increase demand for iodine," a consumer
told Industrial Minerals.
"Moreover, if we look at pregnant women, the recommended
dose per day would go up to 220 mcg whereas a breastfeeding
woman would need 290 mcg per day," the producer added.
Iodine prices have increased steadily since the start of
2017 with iodine (crystal, 99.5% min, drums) spot prices at
$22.50-24.00 per kg on November 23, up from $18.50-21.00 per kg
EU policymakers are not doing enough to tackle IDDs,
stakeholders said during the conference.
"EU policymakers are not giving enough attention to the
prevention of iodine deficiency disorders," Dr Vincenzo
Costigliola, president of the European Medical Association,
said during his presentation at the conference. "Doctors have a
double role: to inform both patients and politicians."
Dr John Allen, technical director at the European Feed
Manufacturers Federation (FEFAC), said that while consumption
of milk and eggs has the potential to supplement human intake
of iodine, a lack of EU legislation has been a major
|Delegates at the first
World Iodine Association conference
in Pisa, Italy November 17, 2017.
"Bringing together all the [participants] in the agri-food
chain is essential to tackle iodine deficiency disorders," Dr
The WIA was created to address the concerns of the iodine
industry, Felipe Smith, chairman of the board of directors and
vice president of business intelligence and business
development at Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (SQM),
told Industrial Minerals.
The objectives of the WIA include tackling IDDs,
representing the iodine industry and presenting community
concerns to governmental and regulatory bodies to push for a
universal minimum human iodine intake level, as well as
promoting knowledge about, development of and the use of
iodine, Smith added.
Attilio Caligiani, WIA director general, said that the
conference has promoted a common multi-stakeholder approach
toward the prevention of IDD.
"WIA’s mission is to raise awareness among
policymakers about risks associated with IDD and to ensure
their support in the near future," Caligiani said. A balanced
iodine [intake] needs to be part of policymakers’
public health strategic planning for 2020-24."
WIA members include SQM, GE Healthcare AS, Iofina plc,
AkzoNobel Salt Specialties, Calibre Chemicals Private Ltd,
Deepwater Chemicals and European Salt Producers
Delegates at the Pisa event included iodine producers,
scientists, academics, members of the medical community, and
sustainable food industry, feed industry and patient
organisations, and policymakers.
The WIA board plans to hold its second conference in the
next two/three years, Smith told Industrial Minerals, and hopes
to include an even broader spectrum of the iodine industry.
Iodine’s Key uses
Iodine-based biocides are used in paints, adhesives, wood
treatment and fluids for metallurgy.
Liquid crystal displays, such as those in high-definition
televisions and touchscreen technology, make use of two
sheets of polarising material with a "liquid crystal"
solution between them. Iodine is a key component in the
Iodine is important in the prevention of goitre, thyroid
malfunction and cretinism, as well as growth defects in
foetuses. In order to ensure people get their recommended
intake, salt is iodised all over the word.
Iodine is used as a raw material for x-ray contrast media,
enhancing visibility during various bodily scans. It is also
used in antiseptics, anti-radiation pills and as an active
ingredient in various other pharmaceutical products,
including antispasmodics, coronary vasodilators and
neuromuscular blocking agents.