Why List of ‘Harmful’ Food Items Not Published

Why List of ‘Harmful’ Food Items Not PublishedWhy List of ‘Harmful’ Food Items Not Published

The head of the National Nutrition and Food Technology Research Institute gave reasons “why the list of harmful food items in the market” has not been published and said in meetings with food manufacturers, the latter had voiced concerns about updating the industry’s necessary technologies and other relevant problems.

Dr. Majid Hajifaraji, speaking at a press conference to elaborate on the 13th International Congress of Iran Nutrition, said following the meetings, they were determined to address the problems and “also the issue of labeling food items harmful to people’s health.”

He asserted that dealing with the issue needs a long-term plan and “the production and distribution of food harmful to consumers’ health cannot be phased out in a short time.” That was why the list of the items has not been published yet.

Hajifaraji pointed out that a developed country like Denmark, as part of its food and nutrition plan, “took 30 years to reduce the amount of salt consumption in people’s eating habits.”

 Special Team

A special committee and workgroup was formed last year to assess the quality of food products and its report was presented to the health and hygiene deputy at the Food and Drug Administration, he noted.

To reduce fat, sugar, and salt in food products was the aim of the committee, Hajifaraji said.

He pointed to the interaction and collaboration between the ministry of health and the domestic food industry and said, “The ministry is ready to help the food industry to replace harmful items with healthy ones.”

At present, only 2 to 5% of the cooking oil is produced within the country and the rest is imported.

Hajifaraji said the percentage of overweight and obese people in the society is between 55% and 70%, which “is a major threat to the health of the nation.”

 The second highest cause of death in Iran is incommunicable diseases, he added.

The Iran nutrition congress is to be held from November 30 to December 3, at Tehran’s Niroo Research Institute (NRI). This is the first time international participants have been invited.