Canada bans use of trans fats in food products

Canada bans use of trans fats in food products

After the US announced a ban on trans fats in 2015, which it fully implemented earlier in 2018, a newly elected Justin Trudeau asked his health minister to look into tougher regulations, ultimately leading to the ban.

The ban, which was announced previous year to give manufacturers the time to prepare, will come into effect on Monday, September 17.

The ban makes it illegal for manufacturers to add artificial trans fats to their products and the rule will apply to all foods produced for sale in the country, including imported products and foods prepared and served in restaurants and foodservice establishments, reported CBC (Sept. 16). Truly how that will effect consumers is that they won't have to think about it in the same way they used to.

Canada's ban on partially hydrogenated oils takes effect Monday as health officials work to reduce deadly trans fats.

While Freedhoff believes the amount of products containing trans fats remaining on grocery store shelves will be relatively small, consumers should look at the ingredient list for the words "partially hydrogenated", even if a product's label says "trans fat-free" or "zero trans fats".

While the ingredient's goal in common foods is to extend their shelf life rather than influence the taste or texture of any of your treats, the loss of that ingredient is definitely going to change the way your favourite fried foods taste forever.

Heart disease is the second leading cause of death in Canada and resulted in about 50,000 deaths in 2012. "Health Canada's ban on partially hydrogenated oils in the food supply is part of the Government of Canada's action to help protect Canadians from diet-related chronic disease".

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Trans fats have been used for the last century in an effort to add taste and texture to food, but they also increase the levels of "bad" cholesterol, which raises the risk of heart disease.

Instead, it introduced mandatory trans fat labelling, set voluntary targets for processed foods, and set up a monitoring program to measure industry's progress toward meeting the voluntary targets.

Canada isn't the first country to do this.

Artificial trans fats were officially banned from Canada's food supply on Monday.

Retailers will be given a grace period of two years to clear the inventory already on store shelves.

This ban includes a two-year phase-in period, during which products containing PHOs can continue to be sold, as long as they were manufactured before 17 September 2018.

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