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"Unnecessary" nutrients?

Mark D. White

An article from The New York Times reports on changes in the food industry's labelling standards with respect to calories, salt, fat, ands sugar, which presumably are intended not only to provide better information to consumers but also to encourage food manufacturers to lessen such aspects of its products (as Wal-Mart agreed to do not long ago). The article explains that an earlier report from the Institute of Medicine urged the food industry not to include positive ingredients--such as calcium, vitamins, and the like--because it might "encourage manufacturers to fortify foods unnecessarily with vitamins or other ingredients."

Since when is fortifying foods with healthy ingredients "unnecessary"? Unnecessary to what? So reducing fat and salt is necessary, but adding vitamins and minerals isn't? And who is going to say what ingredients and additives are "necessary"? (Sit down, Mayor Bloomberg.)


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