WHO recommends slashing sugar consumption

The World Health Organisation has called on governments worldwide for action to reduce daily sugar consumption by both adults and children to less than 10% of their total energy intake and recommended a goal of below 5%.

Food Safety & Standards, Harmonisation, Health, United Nations

UK group writes to Andriukaitis criticising EFSA communication on BPA

UK chemicals campaign group CHEM Trust has written to EU Health and Food Safety Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis, criticising the way that the European Food Safety Authority’s communications department covered an opinion on bisphenol A (BPA)

Food Safety & Standards, Guidelines, Food Contact Material, UK

New rules make Nordic Keyhole food labelling scheme more strict

As of 1 March, tougher requirements will be in place for foods in the Nordic countries to gain the Keyhole label. Under the rules, Keyhole products will need to contain less salt, sugar and saturated fat, and more whole grains.

Labelling, Health and Nutrition, Quality, Country Reports

Origin labelling “not for preventing fraud”, says Commission

The European Commission has said it does not consider information on origin or provenance as a tool for the prevention of fraud or as a tool for the protection of public health. “There are other mechanisms in place to ensure the safety and the traceability of food,” health and food safety Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis said.

Labelling, Country of Origin

Alcohol and transfat labelling reports delayed

Two key labelling reports covering alcoholic drinks and transfatty acids – transfats – that the Commission was required to publish by the end of last year under the food information to consumers regulation (FIC – 1169/2011) might not now emerge before the summer.

Labelling, Health and Nutrition

Croatia issues paper on lead and cadmium in food

Croatia’s Food Agency (HAH) has issued a new 33-page scientific opinion (HAH-I-2015-1) to establish the maximum permitted content of lead and cadmium in honey, wild game meat and rabbit meat.

US stuck on COOL, but Australia moves forward

The USDA is currently out of legal fixes for its controversial country-of-origin labelling (COOL) requirement and is waiting for a World Trade Organization ruling on its appeal of the October 2014 WTO decision, senior USDA officials told lawmakers in a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing on March 3rd.

Labelling, Country of Origin, Americas, Australasia

MEPs vote for allergen information rules to apply to B2B sales

EU allergen information requirements should apply to products sold business-to-business, the European Parliament’s Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee agreed last week in backing a key amendment to a proposed update to the EU’s existing directive on caseins and caseinates (83/417/EC).

Labelling, Health and Nutrition

EU GMO ban will “have little impact”, says Monsanto

The EU Council’s decision to allow individual member states to ban the cultivation of EU-approved GM crops on their own territories won’t change much, US seed company Monsanto has said. In a blog prior to last Monday’s vote, the company said it expected some non-governmental organisations to paint this as a “victory” for Monsanto and other companies that sell GM seeds in Europe and other parts of the world. “Some will even say that we will begin selling GM seeds in EU countries where they haven’t previously been planted as soon as next year. This is rubbish,” the company states.

Food Technology, Genetic Modification, Food Safety & Standards, Legislation

EFSA finds Buglossoides oil safe as a novel food ingredient

Refined Buglossoides oil is safe for use as a novel food ingredient (NFI) in both foods and supplements and the likelihood of adverse allergic reactions is low, according to a new opinion from the European Food Safety Authority.

Food Technology, Novel Foods

EFSA only assessed caffeine-alcohol risk below drink-drive limit

The European Food Safety Authority only looked at the interaction between caffeine and alcoholic beverages at alcohol levels below the drink-drive limit and not those regularly consumed in nightclubs across Europe every weekend, it emerged at a 5 March meeting on the draft opinion.

Food Safety & Standards

Some “extra virgin” olive oil in Portugal found to be inferior quality

Almost one in every six ‘extra virgin’ olive oil products tested in Portugal by Deco Proteste, a leading consumer protection association in Portugal, were found to be inferior quality olive oil products.

Food Safety & Standards, Investigations, Portugal

EFSA rejects Lyc-O-Mato® cholesterol-lowering claim

Lycotec’s claim that its L-tug lycopene Lyc-O-Mato® supplement reduces blood low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol has been thrown out by the European Food Safety Authority’s Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA).

Health Claims, Decisions, Health

US health claims: one randomised clinical trial required, not two

A court ruling against adverts for the fruit drink POM Wonderful is likely to have an impact on future Federal Trade Commission (FTC) decisions, Food Chemical News reports.

Health Claims, Americas

Children saw fewer TV food ads in 2014, monitoring data shows

Children saw fewer television adverts for foods last year particularly products high in fat, sugar and salt, according to the latest monitoring data for 2014 produced under the voluntary EU Pledge.

Advertising, Children and Young People

Advertising campaign supporting safety of Bisphenol-A launched in US

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) has launched an advertising campaign to highlight recent positions taken by US and European regulatory authorities on the safety of the food packaging chemical Bisphenol-A (BPA).

Advertising, Americas

Ex-Diageo director to head up UK food industry body

The UK’s food and drink industry body has appointed a former corporate relations director of drinks company Diageo as its new director general


EFSA gives public access to data

The European Food Safety Authority started to open up its collection of scientific data on 2 March with the launch of its publicly accessible data warehouse.