Thursday, September 19, 2019

Thursday, September 19, 2019

NUTEK FOOD SCIENCE: To Transition Potassium Salt Labeling Initiative to New FDA Docket


Nutek Food Science issued the following announcement on May 29.

NuTek Food Science, LLC, a company that helps create great-tasting and affordable foods to enhance global health and wellness, announced that it is withdrawing its widely supported and highly publicized citizen petition concerning potassium salt that was filed with the FDA in 2016.  The withdrawal of the petition is in response to the release of the FDA's issuance of Draft Guidance issued on May 17, 2019.  "As the FDA has created a new docket to carry forward this extremely important review, we are withdrawing our citizen petition in order to simplify the process for all stakeholders." said Brian Boor, Chief Strategy Officer for NuTek Food Science. 

As high sodium diets increase the risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease, it is imperative that barriers to lower-sodium food reformulation be eliminated.  NuTek's citizen petition was filed to help food companies advance their sodium reduction efforts, and in turn, advance the FDA's sodium reduction policy objectives for improved population health.  "We are extremely pleased that the FDA has recognized the significance of this labeling issue, and the crucial and beneficial role potassium chloride (potassium salt) serves as a partial replacement for sodium chloride (salt).  Although the FDA's initial draft guidance fails to address the problematic use of the word "chloride," we are confident that the food industry and the health community can make a compelling argument for its removal during the 60-day comment period," stated Boor. 

The NuTek petition requested that the FDA allow companies the option to voluntarily label potassium chloride with the common and usual alternative name of "potassium salt."  The petition was filed based on extensive industry dialogue and consumer research that clearly indicated consumers find the term "chloride" both concerning and confusing, often mistaking it with "chlorine."  Consumer confusion and concern regarding the term "chloride," coupled with growing consumer demand for "clean labels," have greatly hindered the food industry's efforts in reducing sodium and increasing potassium within processed foods.  In turn, this has curtailed efforts to lower population-wide sodium consumption and increase potassium consumption by policy makers and the health community.

Robust health-organization and food-industry consortiums in the United States, Canada and the European Union are encouraging the voluntary and optional usage of "potassium salt" in those markets.  Boor commented, "Hypertension is a global issue.  Sodium overconsumption is a global issue, as is potassium underconsumption.  The demand by consumers for clean label ingredients is a global trend that is only increasing in intensity.  We have great partners that are making great progress because what we are requesting is sound." 

The "potassium salt" labeling initiative has garnered extensive and broad-based support from both the health community and the food industry.   Leading health and consumer advocacy groups including the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), World Action on Salt & Health (WASH), the World Hypertension League, Hypertension Canada, Heart & Stroke Canada, Diabetes Canada, and Dieticians of Canada have all issued public statements of support for "potassium salt" labeling.  They have been joined by many leading food companies and trade associations including The Campbell Soup Company, Nestle, Unilever, Walmart, The American Bakers Association, The Baking Association of Canada, AIBI, The North American Meat Institute, The Canadian Meat Council, Clitravi Europe, Culinaria Europe, SNAC International, The Canadian Snack Food Association, Dairy Processors Association of Canada, the Retail Council of Canada, The Canadian Spice Association and the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association. 

"It is very rare to find an issue on which both leading food companies and leading health advocates fully agree.  However, this is a unique and vitally important issue.  I believe this alignment speaks to the sound logic behind the request and the significant benefits it will provide to consumer nutrition, the food supply and health policy objectives," stated Boor.  "The FDA, and similar global agencies, have granted many alternative names for ingredients with far less public support and logic—and none could claim the potential public health benefits, potential health care savings, and improvement in quality life years that this change can offer."

NuTek views the potassium salt labeling initiative as an imperative to improve public health globally.  "Reducing sodium consumption reduces hypertension.  Increasing potassium consumption reduces hypertension, at least in those with hypertension.  Sound policy helps companies facilitate the replacement of sodium with potassium," said Boor.  "Potassium salt labeling is an essential component of sound hypertension-reduction policy."

About NuTek Food Science, LLC

The mission of NuTek Food Science is to help create great-tasting and affordable foods that enhance global health and wellness. The company strives to grow its business by being a great partner to the global food system and the health community with innovative products for food manufacturers, food retailers and restaurant chains. Salt for Life®, their revolutionary salt product, delivers improved nutrition through unprecedented levels of sodium reduction, while replacing with potassium, a necessary and widely underconsumed nutrient – all while maintaining great taste. The product is naturally sourced and, through a proprietary process, has helped many of the world's leading food companies achieve successful sodium reduction in the range of 15%-50%. In addition, Salt for Life® potassium salt & sea salt blend, with 75% less sodium than regular table salt, is available in a consumer-friendly bottle for at-home use.

NuTek Food Science, funded in part by an investment from Khosla Ventures, has offices in Omaha, NE and Minneapolis, MN. Rabobank named NuTek Food Science as its Emerging Leader in Innovation Award winner in 2015.  Fast Companyhighlighted NuTek as one of three companies that Bill Gates recognized as "Shaping the Future of Food." For more information, please visit us at www.nuteksalt.com or www.saltforlife.com. 

Original source can be found here.

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