International Food & Beverage Companies Align with WHO Standard in Global Commitment on Industrially Produced Trans Fat

Twelve of the largest global food and beverage companies pledge to enhance their commitment to the World Health Organization’s goal of phasing out industrially produced trans fat from the global food supply by 2023.

Geneva, Switzerland, 7 May 2019 – After a constructive discussion hosted by WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on 2 May 2019, members of the International Food and Beverage Alliance (IFBA) have taken a further step in progressing the commitments they first made to the WHO in 2008, with the adoption of an enhanced worldwide commitment to phase out industrially-produced trans fats (iTFAs) from their products.

At the end of 2018, IFBA members had met the target of their 2016 commitment to reduce iTFAs in their products to nutritionally insignificant levels (less than 1 gram of fat per 100 grams of product) across 98.5% of their products worldwide.

Now, they have committed to align their global standard with WHO’s recommendation for a maximum iTFA threshold in food products not exceeding 2 grams of iTFA per 100 grams of fat or oil by 2023. The new IFBA commitment includes McDonald’s, which was not part of the 2016 commitment.

In support of both WHO Guidelines recommending a maximum 1% total energy intake from all trans fat and an intake of saturated fat not exceeding 10% of total energy intake, IFBA member companies will seek wherever possible to avoid that reformulation efforts to meet this iTFA commitment result in increases in saturated fat content.

“Working closely with the WHO under Dr Tedros’ leadership, the CEOs of IFBA have made a strong commitment on industrially produced trans fats. This is a demonstration of effective partnerships, leveraging the authority of WHO and the scale and commitment of the private sector for tangible public health outcomes”, said Rocco Renaldi, IFBA Secretary-General. “We hope our commitment inspires our suppliers and partners along the value chain to join us too. We will share our know-how with governments, civil society and the broader industry to ensure that the objective can be met by all food manufacturers in all countries”, he added.

The text of IFBA’s statement can be accessed here.