SUBSCRIBE

Breaking News on Supplements, Health & Nutrition - Europe US edition | APAC edition

Trends > Health claims

Go East: Inside Asia’s evolving health claims laws

By Shane Starling , 30-Aug-2012
Last updated on 31-Aug-2012 at 11:28 GMT2012-08-31T11:28:21Z

Go East: Inside Asia’s evolving health claims laws

The substantiation and transference into law of varying kinds of data backing food supplements, herbal products and other healthy foods remains a major hurdle in evolving Asian food regulations, an expert has said.

As Asian countries, and groups of Asian countries like ASEAN (the 10-strong Association of South East Asian Nations) , implement regulations around food supplements – often for the first time – agencies like EAS are working with industry and regulators to develop regulations that both ensure safety and promote innovation, said its director, Simon Pettman.

That means putting regulatory systems in place that recognise nutrition science in all its forms including tradition of use data – and not ones that privilege pharma-style intervention trials that may distort markets a la the European Union nutrition and health claims regulation (NHCR).

Strategic necessity

The man who is also the executive director of the International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplement Associations (IADSA), is a firm believer in the business-driving value of well-written regulation in health claims, labelling and other areas, but warned it can be difficult to make firms see the value in taking a stake in regulatory debates.

“For Asian businesses, regulations do not always have the same level of focus as people might expect in say Europe or the US,” said Pettman, who will chair a debate around these issues at next week’s Vitafoods Asia trade show in Hong Kong.

“But what we have found is that once they are educated about the importance of good regulations, and that they can play an important role in shaping them, that they realise it really is a strategic necessity. Once it goes to the board level more companies are seeing regulation as a vital element in their business strategy.”

While there was a lot of work to do, he said he was encouraged by developments in countries like South Korea, where regulations had been put in place that were seeing many claims make it to market.

In ASEAN, Singapore was possibly the most evolved market in this direction, with many others working their way through regulatory proposals and many keeping an eye on the EU situation.

India has issued draft regulations around claims and labelling, China has streamlined its approved list of claims from 27 to 18, and Japan is conducting a review of the effectiveness of its own FOSHU (Foods For Specified Health Uses) set-up.

“There is no single Asian solution,” Pettman reflected. “It’s an evolutionary process but we are encouraged by what we are seeing.”

More information about the discussion forum can be found here.

The other ASEAN members are Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines, Laos, Brunei, Cambodia and Myanmar.

Related products

Live Supplier Webinars

Polyphenols tipped to become the way to innovate in Sports Nutrition
Fytexia
Alpha & Omega in Sports Nutrition – Using Omega 3’s and A-GPC to improve performance and recovery.
KD Pharma
Orally bioavailable standardized botanical derivatives in sport nutrition: special focus on recovery in post-intense physical activities
Indena
Collagen in motion: move freely and keep your injuries in check
Leading manufacturer of gelatine and collagen peptides
Life’s too short for slow proteins. Whey proteins hydrolysates: Fast delivery for enhanced performance
Arla Foods Ingredients
What it Takes to Compete and Win in Today’s Sports Nutrition Market
Capsugel
Sports Nutrition Snapshot: Key regional drivers and delivery format innovations
William Reed Business Media
Gutsy performance: How can microbiome modulation help athletes and weekend warriors
William Reed Business Media
Pushing the boundaries: Where’s the line between ‘cutting edge nutrition’ and doping
William Reed Business Media

On demand Supplier Webinars

High-amylose maize starch may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes: what does this qualified health claim mean?
Ingredion
Balancing Innovation and Risk in Sports Nutrition Ingredients
NSF-International
Explaining bio-hacking: is there a marketing opportunity for food companies?
William Reed Business Media
Personalized Nutrition – how an industry can take part in shaping the future of Nutrition
BASF Nutrition & Health
Find out Nutritional and ingredient lifecycle solutions and strategies!
Roquette
Is the time rIpe for I-nutrition?
William Reed Business Media
The Advantage of Outsourcing Fermentation-based Manufacturing Processes
Evonik Health Care
All supplier webinars