USA – FDA to Redefine “Healthy” Claim for Food Labeling

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today announced that it has started a public process to redefine the “healthy” nutrient content claim for food labeling. Redefining “healthy” is part of an overall plan to provide consumers with information and tools to enable them to easily and quickly make food choices consistent with public health recommendations and to encourage the development of healthier foods by the industry.

While FDA is considering how to redefine the term “healthy” as a nutrient content claim, food manufacturers can continue to use the term “healthy” on foods that meet the current regulatory definition. FDA is also issuing a guidance document stating that FDA does not intend to enforce the regulatory requirements for products that use the term if certain criteria described in the guidance document are met.

For readers which are not very practical with US legislation, it is useful to outline that “healthy” – while in many country is a not regulated term – is considered in USA a nutrient content claim, and it can be used exclusively when some compositional criteria related to specific nutrients are met. In that sense, you can check two recent warning letters to food business operators, where you can find relevant reference to legislation and examples of non compliance:

http://www.fda.gov/iceci/enforcementactions/warningletters/2015/ucm437839.htm

http://www.fda.gov/iceci/enforcementactions/warningletters/2014/ucm425102.htm

Public health recommendations for various nutrients have evolved, as reflected by the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the updated Nutrition Facts label. For example, healthy dietary patterns now focus on food groups, the type of fat rather than the total amount of fat consumed and now address added sugars in the diet. Also, the nutrients of public health concern that consumers aren’t getting enough of have changed.

FDA is publishing a “request for information” to solicit public input as it redefines the term “healthy.” In addition, the Agency is planning other public forums to receive additional public input.

For more information:

Federal Register Notice for the Guidance for Industry
Federal Register Notice for the Request for Information
Guidance for Industry: Use of the Term “Healthy” in the Labeling of Human Food Products
Blog: Making Sure ‘Healthy’ Means What It Says on Food Packages
“Healthy” on Food Labeling

(Source: FDA website)

Slow Food Youth Tank – Torino 24th September 2016

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Next weekend Torino’s streets, will host Salone del Gusto – Terra Madre, the most important international event dedicated to food tradition, gastronomy and biodiversity: main promoter of the event is Slow Food movement.

On Saturday 24th September, Toolbox, one of the most important co-working space in Europe and amazing hub of creatives and innovative businesses – where I am proud to have my office – will be the venue of the Slow Food Youth Tank.bg_3

SFYN Tank is an experimental event aimed at squaring open-exchange of expertise at the center of food activism. Aimed at anyone in grassroots food work or creative sectors, the objective is to to engage food enthusiasts in collective problem-solving through design-thinking.

It will be a pleasure to be one of the 9 life-line experts helping 99 young talents (activists, creatives, startuppers) in their efforts to think up solutions for the food business. The topics will be various and of uttermost interest, from food education tools to democratizing the food communication, from “thinking outside the can” in the fish business to repurposing abandoned spaces for food purposes, urban farming and innovative/sustainable design.

In case you are in Torino next weekend, please be in touch. We can share some delicious product in the street of my wonderful home-town.

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