Zero Sugar Experts Added To Craft Federal Guidelines on Added Sugar

sugar - FDA has new labeling guidelinesThe US Food and Drug Administration, no doubt after fielding dozens of angry calls from Michelle Obama (shouting LET’S MOVE!), has finally unleashed released new food labeling requirements for the people’s of our once great land.  (Can you feel the lack of anticipation?)

So what’s the deal with this latest round of bureaucratic interference by our “betters?”

First, let us make clear that the FDA’s new Moochell-O mandate will cost you at least $640 million dollars (costs food manufacturers will pass on to satisfy these new rules). So what do we get?

The visually impaired will have less trouble reading things like serving size and calories.

Disregarding the likelihood that “families” are actually reading the label (or thanks to Federal intrusions in education are even capable of reading the label) the end result is not nearly as interesting as the lack of science behind it.

One of the major (advertised) motivations for a change was to include more details about added sugar. But some are questioning the new information because it is based on guidelines crafted by a committee without any added experts on added sugar. That’s correct, not one member of the committee in charge of making these expensive changes was an expert on sugars or carbohydrates.

A letter critical of the new label signed by a dozen scientists, including Roger Clemens, a member of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, and Eric A. Decker, the head of the Department of Food Science at the University of Massachusetts, was submitted to the Office of Management and Budget. The scientists said the new label is “misleading,” and note that it was based on the 2015 Dietary Guidelines, whose committee did not include a single expert on sugars.

“We are concerned that U.S. public health policy in this area may be progressing down a path that history suggests to be counterproductive,” the scientists wrote. “Specifically, the FDA’s proposed rule revising the Nutrition Facts Label with regard to an added sugars declaration and the establishment of a dietary reference value (DRV) of 10 percent lacks both the scientific rigor based on careful consideration or evidence-based reviews and a thorough appraisal of unintended consequences that will surely arise.”

“The FDA has stated its proposals are based on conclusions from the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (2015 DGAC),” they said. “In addition to the widely controversial nature of its report, it is critical to note that this committee did not include a single member with a specific expertise in sugars (or any carbohydrate) metabolism. As nutrition scientists and health professionals, we feel this is of significant concern.”

Government guidelines are historically (or is that hysterically) wrong more often than they are right but this time around we’ve got central planners providing grocery lists to help you plan meals, or is that meals to help you plan grocery lists?

Whichever it is, IowaHawk David Burge sums up the relationship nicely.

 

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