Trans Fat Labeling to Be Required

Jul 11, 2002

A final rule requiring that the amount of trans fat be listed on food labels could be completed by this fall or early next spring, according to Christine Lewis Taylor, labeling chief of the Food and Drug Administration.

Ms. Taylor’s announcement followed the release of a report from the Institute of Medicine, a branch of the National Academy of Sciences, concluding that trans fat in the diet is directly associated with the bad LDL cholesterol and heart disease. The IOM report urges people to keep trans fat consumption “as low as possible while consuming a nutritionally adequate diet.”

“The sad fact is many people trying to make healthy food choices are often unwittingly eating foods that are high in trans fat because it’s not on the label,” says Walter C. Willett of Harvard University. “Some food manufacturers have replaced saturated fat with trans fat to try and make their foods look healthier.”

Moderator Comment: How will the FDA’s ruling impact product formulation and the items that appear on food store shelves?

According to the Institute of Medicine, “the only safe amount of trans fat in the diet is none.” Yikes! [George Anderson – Moderator]

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