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National Restaurant Association - NRA seeks input on trans-fat phase-out

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NRA seeks input on trans-fat phase-out

The National Restaurant Association is conducting a survey of industry professionals to determine how the Food and Drug Administration’s tentative decision to ban partially hydrogenated oils, the primary source of artificial trans fat in foods, would affect how the industry conducts business.

The FDA, until now, has said partially hydrogenated oils, or PHOs, have been “generally regarded as safe.”

The NRA said it would use the information collected through the survey to ensure comments it submits on the FDA’s proposal appropriately reflect industry challenges in completely eliminating trans fat from menu options. The survey is open through Dec. 11, and available at http://svy.mk/1df8jkR.

The FDA said Nov. 8 it is deciding whether or not to phase PHOs out based on a review of studies that show a link between the consumption of artificial trans fats and an increased risk of developing coronary heart disease. The agency said it would accept comments on its proposal until Jan. 7, 2014. However, the NRA, along with other industry representatives, has asked for a 60-day extension.

Artificial trans fat often is used to extend the shelf life of certain products and improve the texture and sensory profile of certain foods, such as pastries and other baked goods. The FDA added that the proposed ban wouldn’t affect naturally occurring trans fats, such as those found in meat and dairy products.

Industry professionals interested in completing the survey about the trans-fat phase-out can contact Joy Dubost, the NRA’s director of nutrition and healthy living, at jdubost@restaurant.org.

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