Evalutaion of the implementation of the folate-neural tube defect health claim and its impact on the availability of folate-fortified food in Australia
Lawrence, Mark 2006, Evalutaion of the implementation of the folate-neural tube defect health claim and its impact on the availability of folate-fortified food in Australia, Australian and New Zealand journal of public health, vol. 30, no. 4, pp. 363-368.
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Objective: To evaluate the implementation of the folate-neural tube defect (NTD) health claim and its impact on the availability of folate-fortifed food in Australia.
Methods: During late 2005, a survey was conducted in 16 supermarkets across all Australian capital cities to identify the use of the folate-NTD health claim on the labels of the 128 food products listed in food standard 1.1A.2: 'Transitional standard - Health claims' and the number of products fortifed with folic acid.
Results: Seventy-nine per cent of existing listed food products were found and two of these were implementing the folate-NTD health claim. Forty-four per cent of these listed products, previously fortifed with folic acid, were no longer fortifed. One hundred and seventeen generally available food products were fortifed with folic acid, predominantly breakfast cereals (73%). Twenty-seven per cent of these folate-fortifed products were listed in the transitional standard.
Conclusions: The health claim was not used widely to inform women of child-bearing age of the importance of periconceptional folate intake. The increased availability of folate-fortifed products generally has occurred independently of the health claim. Defciencies in the verifcation system of the tested regulatory framework are identifed. The voluntary regulatory provisions for both folate fortifcation and the use of the health claim diminished the States' infuence over their implementation of public health tools.
Field of Research
111199 Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified
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