Health Canada recently published a Notice of Intent to inform Canadians, regulated parties and other stakeholders of the Minister of Health’s intention to:
- Permit vitamin D fortification of yogurt, drinkable and kefir, and
- Expand the eligibility for the dairy-related exemption from the front-of-package (FOP) nutrition labelling requirement by implementing a lower calcium threshold.
Both items are good news for the dairy industry. Vitamin D fortification of yogurt, drinkable yogurt and kefir has been a historic request from DPAC, and is particularly important at this juncture given the new research showing the significant health benefits of Vitamin D. Regarding the exemptions on front of package labelling (FoPL), the proposal is to reduce the calcium threshold to get exemptions on saturated fat and sugar on cheese and yogurt, drinkable yogurt and kefir from 10 per cent to 5 per cent. This change will significantly increase the percentage of dairy products (particularly cheese) that qualify for the FoPL exemptions. It remains the case that yogurt with added sugar (other than sugar from fruits) will not qualify for the exemptions.
Comments on both proposals can be provided to Health Canada until August 28, 2023.