US: GMA Petition to Extend the Use of PHOs

Posted By: Selerant RSA

The United States Food and Drug Administration has acknowledged acceptance and review of the petition filed by Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) on October 1, 2015, proposing the use of PHO’s (partially hydrogenated vegetable oils) as food additives for functions: carrier or component thereof for flavors or flavorings, diluent or component thereof for color additives, incidental additive or processing aid, and as a direct additive in specific foods.

The petition has been sought to be reviewed under 21 CFR part 172 “Food Additives Permitted for Direct Addition to Food for Human Consumption” that is open for comments until November 27, 2015.

Manufacture of PHO's

Partially Hydrogenated vegetable oils (CAS No. 68334-28-1) are manufactured from vegetable oils or their blends: soy, cottonseed, canola, palm, palm kernel, coconut and sunflower.

Vegetable oils are first refined and bleached according to standard industry practices and then subjected to high temperature and pressure, in the presence of a catalyst, usually nickel. This process of incomplete hydrogenation results in Partially Hydrogenated vegetable oils. PHO’s are used in manufacture of foods, food ingredients, processing aids to improve oxidative stability and melting/ crystallization properties of food grade fats and oils.

Permitted functions of PHO's

The functional  uses of PHO’s include those described in 21 CFR 170.3(o).They are also incorporated into varieties of foods such as: candies, frozen foods, soups, cakes, dry seasoning mixes, pies, salad dressings, hot cereal mixes, granola bars, margarine, shortening, and others.

Proposed levels of use of PHO's

For more information regarding the petition and comments, click here (Docket no. FDA-2015-F-3663).