News

FDA wants to ban trans-fat

FDA wants to ban trans-fat

TRANS-FAT BAN: The FDA wants the oils out of processed foods. Photo: Reuters

By Toni Clarke and Ros Krasny

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday proposed banning artificial trans fat in processed food, a move that was welcomed by public health advocates but which rattled vegetable oil markets and pushed prices down sharply.

The FDA said reducing partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) from the American diet could prevent 7,000 deaths from heart disease each year.

If its proposal becomes final, the oils, the primary dietary source of artificial trans fat, would be considered food additives and could not be used in food unless authorized.

The ruling would not affect naturally occurring trans fat that occurs in small amounts in certain meat and dairy products, the agency said.

The FDA’s proposal is subject to a 60-day public comment period.

Trans fats are common in a wide range of processed foods including crackers and cookies, frozen pizza and refrigerated dough, coffee creamers and ready-to-use frosting, said Mical Honigfort, a consumer safety officer at FDA.

The American Heart Association lauded the actions as a step forward in battling heart disease.

“We commend the FDA for responding to the numerous concerns and evidence submitted over the years about the dangers of this industrially produced ingredient,” the AHA’s Nancy Brown said in a statement.

Hydrogenation is a chemical process that converts liquid vegetable oils into solid or semi-solid fats, which are preferred for baking and have a longer shelf life.

The dominant vegetable oil used in the United States is soybean oil. The FDA’s announcement sparked a rapid sell-off in Chicago soyoil futures prices by creating uncertainty about its impact on vegetable oil demand.

Soyoil fell by about 1.5 percent to 40.52 cents per pound, its lowest level since October 29, in heavy trading.

Recent Headlines

in Sports

Mayweather defeats Pacquiao in decision

Mayweather via Twitter

Two judges favored Mayweather 116-112, while a third had it 118-110. The Associated Press scored it 115-113 for Mayweather.

in Sports

NHL Playoffs: Rangers even things up

New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) snags a shot on goal by the Montreal Canadiens during the first period in Game 6 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoffs Eastern Conference finals, Thursday, May 29, 2014, in New York.

Henrik Lundqvist made 26 of his 30 saves in the final 40 minutes to preserve the victory.

in Sports

Jets trade for Rams’ Stacy

St. Louis Rams running back Zac Stacy (30) celebrates after scoring on a 1-yard run as teammate Cory Harkey (46) watches during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013, in St. Louis.

Jets also draft Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty with a fourth-round pick.

in Local Sports

WWU softball season ends with 9-5 loss to MSUB in GNAC championship game

GNAC logo

Vikings, looking for third straight loser-out win, unable to hold onto 5-2 lead

in Sports

Paul lifts Clippers past Spurs, 111-109 in Game 7

Chris Paul via Twitter

The Clippers, who faltered at home in Games 2 and 5, move on to face the Rockets in the Western Conference semifinals starting Monday night in Houston.