Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Food labeling: health claims; soluble dietary fiber from certain foods and coronary heart disease

Food labeling: health claims; soluble dietary fiber from certain foods and coronary heart disease. December 23, 2005[Federal Register: (Volume 70, Number 246)][Page 76150-76162][DOCID:fr23de05-6][[Page 76150]]21 CFR Part 101[Docket No. 2004P-0512]AGENCY: Food and Drug Administration, HHS.ACTION: Interim final rule.SUMMARY: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is amending the regulation authorizing a health claim on the relationship between oat beta-glucan soluble fiber and reduced risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). The amendment adds barley as an additional eligible source of beta-glucan soluble fiber. We (FDA) are taking this action in response to a petition that the National Barley Foods Council submitted. We have concluded, based on the totality of publicly available scientific evidence that, in addition to certain oat products, whole grain barley and certain dry milled barley grain products are appropriate sources of beta-glucan soluble fiber for the health claim. DATES: This interim final rule is effective December 23, 2005. Submit written or electronic comments by March 8, 2006. The Director of the Office of the Federal Register approves the incorporation by reference in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51 of certain publications in 21 CFR 101.81(c)(2)(ii)(A)(5) as of December 23, 2005.

FDA allows barley products to claim reduction in risk of coronary heart disease

FDA allows barley products to claim reduction in risk of coronary heart disease. December 23, 2005, U.S. FDA Press Release part of its continuing initiative to provide Americans with the information they need to make healthy nutritional choices about foods and dietary supplements, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today announced that whole grain barley and barley-containing products are allowed to claim that they reduce the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD).Consumers can expect to see whole barley and dry milled barley products such as flakes, grits, flour, meal, and barley meal bearing the health claim. An example of the health claim that may be used is:"Soluble fiber from foods such as [name of food], as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease. A serving of [name of food] supplies [x] grams of the soluble fiber necessary per day to have this effect."CHD is the cause of almost 500,000 deaths annually. Risk factors for CHD include high total cholesterol levels and high levels of low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Scientific evidence shows that adding barley to one's diet can contribute to lowering serum cholesterol."Promoting health by helping people get better nutrition information about the foods they eat is among FDA's top priorities, because the choices that Americans make about their diet have a great impact on their well-being," said FDA Deputy Commissioner for Medical and Scientific Affairs Scott Gottlieb, MD. "The FDA review process for making health claims, when combined with our strong enforcement work, rewards companies that make healthier products while we enforce the law against companies that appeal to consumers through false and misleading health claims."FDA is authorizing food manufacturers to immediately use the health claim for barley and the reduced risk of coronary heart disease through the issuance of an interim final rule. To qualify for the health claim, the barley-containing foods must provide at least 0.75 grams of soluble fiber per serving of the food.

Bio-security Coordination Field Hearing

The U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee’s Subcommittee on Research, Nutrition, and General Legislation will hold a field hearing on January 9, 2006, at 1:15 p.m. EST in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. This hearing will be held so that the representatives of national and state governments, academe, and business associated with agriculture may assess their ability to coordinate research and develop an integrated strategy to protect the industry from the accidental or deliberate introduction of pathogens or other biological agents (Bio-security). For more information, visit:

WHO Pandemic Influenza Report

The World Health Organization has released a two-part report on pandemic influenza preparations at the international, national, and community levels. The reports have been published in the CDC journal, Emerging Infectious Diseases. Part I (international preparations) can be found at Emerging Infectious Diseases 2006;12:81–7,, and Part II (national and community preparations) can be found at Emerging Infectious Diseases 2006;12:88–94,

Monday, December 26, 2005

Food Regulation & Litigation Conference

I will be speaking at what promises to be an interesting conference: Food Regulation & Litigation, in Orlando, FL on January 19-20, 2006. My topic is food allergen labeling. Other topics at the conference revolve around the regulatory and litigation issues that are changing the way food companies operate. You can view the complete list of speaker and topics at:

Call for Student Abstracts

Call for Student Abstracts. The Public Health Law Association will again sponsor a student poster session June 12-14, 2006 during the annual public health law conference, called The Public’s Health and the Law in the 21st Century: Fifth Annual Partnership Conference. The Call for Student Abstracts is available at and contains the eligibility and submission information as well as examples from the 2005 session. The deadline for submission is March 1, 2006. Please contact Jean O’Connor at for further information.

Friday, December 23, 2005


Here is the new Food Law blog.

This blog was created largely for the students and alumni of the International Food Law Internet Certificate Program sponsored by the Institute for Food Laws & Regulations and the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Michigan State University However, everyone with an interest in food law in welcome.