Thursday, May 27, 2010

Loophole Allowing Food Products to Avoid Nutrition Labels Becoming Law

Source: The Vancouver Sun (Summary by NIM)

"Bursting with superior levels of naturally occurring antioxidants and backed by $34 million in medical research, it’s also 100% authentic, 100% delicious and 100% pure, meaning there’s no added sugar, colorants or cheap filler juices." But how many calories does it have, and what else is in there?

You may have noticed that some food and beverage products in your supermarket have amazing health claims on them, but they lack nutrition facts labels. And there's a good reason for it (sorta) - they're considered "Natural Health Products".

In Canada, Natural Health Products (NHPs) don't follow the same rules and regulations as regular food and beverages, even though they look just like them, only they're boosted with vitamins, minerals and other 'medicinal-type' ingredients. All companies currently have to do is apply for a permit for an NHP and they can go straight to the shelf. And since there is currently a backlog of nearly 10,000 permits, these products are hitting the shelves even faster.

Due to the increasingly long list of backlogged items, Health Canada's solution to the problem is to make these unlicensed products legal until the backlog is cleared.

Find out more about what this means for Canadians by reading the article called "Health Canada to legalize loophole on fortified foodstuffs lacking nutrition labels" from the Vancouver Sun (May 20, 2010).