The American Public Health Association (APHA) has reportedly passed a
resolution asking the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to revoke salt’s
status as a generally recognized as safe (GRAS) substance within one year.
According to the resolution, which was unanimously approved during APHA’s
139th Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C., the revocation of salt’s GRAS
status would pave the way for FDA regulation and “substantially improve the
cardiovascular health of the American public.”

Among other things, the resolution recommends that FDA (i) establish a schedule for food manufacturers and preparers to progressively lower sodium levels by 75 percent within the next 10 years; (ii) require front-of-package labels that clearly identify whether products contain high-, medium- or low-sodium levels; and (iii) require the food industry to use 2,300 milligrams (mg) as the current standard of calculating sodium daily values in processed foods and lower the daily values to 1,500 mg by 2017.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has applauded the
measure. “Salt, in the amounts presently used in processed foods, is the single
deadliest ingredient in the food supply, contributing to the premature deaths
of tens of thousands of Americans each year,” CSPI Executive Director Michael
Jacobson said. “This has been widely acknowledged in the medical community
for many years, but has been mostly ignored by food manufacturers and
regulators. I hope that the American Public Health Association’s powerful
recommendation spurs the Food and Drug Administration to act—at last.” See
CSPI Press Release, November 1, 2011.

About The Author

For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.