December 22, 1995Web acquaint at: 9:15 p.m. EST
From Correspondent Eugenia Halsey
WASHINGTON (CNN) — It seems like alone bygone that consumers were accepting acclimated to “new and improved” aliment labels. But the altercation over aliment labels isn’t over. The government now wants to relax some of its new rules to acquiesce added foods to accomplish bloom claims on the label.
One adjustment in catechism is accepted as the “jelly bean rule.” It says foods low in fat, cholesterol, and sodium cannot affirmation to advice anticipate assertive diseases unless they accommodate at atomic 10 percent of some added comestible such as vitamins A and C, fiber, or iron. If that article was not there, alike candies like clabber beans could accomplish bloom claims.
Now, the Aliment and Drug Administration wants to affluence up a bit on the rule. The FDA’s new angle says aliment companies still would not be able to accomplish bloom claims for articles like clabber beans. But they could do so for best fruits, vegetables, and accomplished atom breads.
For example, blooming beans do not accommodated the minimum requirements for vitamin A, C, fiber, and protein. Therefore, beneath the accepted system, no bloom claims can be fabricated about the beans. The new angle would change that.
Ed Scarbrough of the FDA says bureau admiral are not adequate the law. Their ambition is to be added adjustable about what bloom claims are accustomed and to admittance added elbowroom in the diction that can be acclimated aback announcement foods. (230K AIFF complete or 230K WAV sound)
“We were anxious and (the) industry was concerned,” says Scarbrough. “Although the new aliment labeling law permits bloom claims, we were seeing actual few in the marketplace.”
The new regulations are still awaiting passage. If they are approved, new labeling rules could go into aftereffect by April of 1996.
Not surprisingly, the aliment industry is affable the accessible change. It says the new angle would accord consumers added advice about what to accommodate in a advantageous diet.
But some customer groups are not blessed about the accessible change. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) says the FDA is beneath political burden to cut aback on regulations. The accumulation additionally says acceptance added bloom claims ability artlessly abash people.
“While fruits and vegetables are about actual healthy, some are bigger than others,” says Bruce Silverglade of CSPI, “all fruits and vegetables are not equal.”
The customer accumulation says instead of alteration accepted regulations, the FDA should absorb added time allowance up ambiguous claims that still abide on aliment labels. For example, there are blueberry waffles in supermarkets now that accommodate no blueberries.
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