FDA Allows Qualified Heart Health Claim for Olive Oil 34107

December 6, 2004

2 Min Read
FDA Allows Qualified Heart Health Claim for Olive Oil


FDA Allows Qualified Heart Health Claim for Olive Oil

WASHINGTONThe Food and DrugAdministration (FDA) approved a qualified health claim for monounsaturated fatfrom olive oil and reduced risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). The agencyfound limited, but not conclusive, evidence that using olive oil in place ofmore saturated fats may reduce the risk of CHD.

With this claim, consumers can make more informed decisionsabout maintaining healthy dietary practices, said Lester M. Crawford, Ph.D.,FDAs acting commissioner. Since CHD is the number one killer of both menand women in the United States, it is a public health priority to make sureconsumers have accurate and useful information on reducing their risk.

FDAs decision was in response to a health claim petitionfiled in August 2003 by the North American Olive Oil Association (NAOOA). Nineteen comments were filed on the petition, with 14supporting the claim unconditionally and the remainder supporting the claim withappropriate qualifications. In its letter to the association, FDA(www.cfsan.fda.gov) noted the agency will exercise enforcement discretion forthe following health claim:

Limited and not conclusive scientific evidence suggeststhat eating about 2 tablespoons (23 grams) of olive oil daily may reduce therisk of coronary heart disease due to the monounsaturated fat in olive oil. Toachieve this possible benefit, olive oil is to replace a similar amount ofsaturated fat and not increase the total number of calories you eat in a day.One serving of this product contains [x] grams of olive oil.

In addition, manufacturers must add a disclaimer adjacent tothe claim directing consumers to the nutrition labeling panel for information ontotal fat content.

Bob Bauer, president of NAOOA(http://naooa.mytradeassociation.org), said the group was pleased with FDAsdecision and expects to see relabeled products on the market fairly quickly. Thisis good news for the industry and for consumers in general, he said. It gives credence to what people have known, that olive oilis healthy. Bauer noted NAOOA filed the petition prior to FDAsimplementation of the qualification system, and therefore expected to seequalification language similar to what FDA issued.

Subscribe and receive the latest insights on the health and nutrition industry.
Join 37,000+ members. Yes, it's completely free.

You May Also Like