IFST Trans Fat Statement

The Institute of Food Science & Technology (IFST, London) has released an updated statement on trans fatty acids, which it says “raise LDL (or “bad”) cholesterol levels in the blood, thereby increasing the risk of coronary heart disease.” Furthermore, the statement states that “IFST supports the WHO [World Health Organization] recommendations and subsequent recommendations from the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA), the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and authorities elsewhere, that manufacturers should reduce the levels of TFA arising from hydrogenation…”

In the United Kingdom, according to TRANSFAIR survey results, trans fatty acid intake (resulting from hydrogenation) was dominated by oils and fats (35.5%), biscuits (cookies) and cakes (16.5%), savory pies, etc. (3.5%), and chips and french fries (4.5%).

The IFST announcement follows the British Retail Consortium’s recent voluntary elimination of industrially added trans-fats from all member-owned brand lines by the end of 2007. Meanwhile, numerous US cities have banned or are contemplating trans fat bans, at least on menus. For the full IFST statement, visit www.ifst.org.

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