EU health claims may spell global opportunities: National Starch Food Innovation
Its own Hi-Maize 260 product has achieved an Article 13 claim for blood sugar management support and ConAgra’s Sustagrain wholegrain barley, distributed across Europe by National Starch Food Innovation, has been given Article 13 claims relating to digestive health, cholesterol levels and also blood sugar management.
Hi-Maize now holds the claim ‘replacing digestible starches with resistant starch contributes to a reduction in the blood glucose rise after a meal’.
Sustagrain can now claim that it contributes to ‘an increase in faecal bulk’, ‘the maintenance of healthy cholesterol levels’ and ‘the maintenance of healthy blood sugar levels’.
Julie Scott, European regulatory manager at National Starch Food Innovation, said these health claims will provide enhanced business opportunities but not just within Europe.
“We should be able to leverage outside the EU,” as there has been interest from Japan, the US and Canada, Scott revealed to BakeryandSnacks.com.
EFSA health claims are known and widely discussed throughout industry outside Europe, she said, and “it’s known that the ingredients have gone through a vigorous process”.
“Because they are now approved and therefore backed by scientific evidence, they can be trusted,” she said.
“There are plenty of customers looking for ingredients with approved health claims,” she added.
The maize and barley ingredients, predominantly used across bread, pasta and cereal applications, have always been positioned as nutritional ingredients, Scott said.
Use of the products has enabled manufacturers to make fibre claims, she said, “but there are now more benefits that can be listed”.
Digestive health, cholesterol and blood sugar management are health issues all well understood by consumers, she said, and this knowledge will be a key point in driving the impact for end products.
The claims flurry
EFSA approved 222 health claims under Article 13 in early May while around 1,600 proposed health associations were banned. See HERE.
The European Commission approved the EFSA positive opinion on the claims associated with Hi-Maize and Sustagrain on May 25 2012. Find more details about EFSA’s health claims HERE.