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Taiwan to ban partially hydrogenated oils

2018/05/15 22:20:23

Taipei, May 15 (CNA) The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a press release Tuesday to reiterate a previous announcement that it will ban the use of partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) -- the major source of artificial trans fats in processed foods -- from July 1.

The announcement on the ban on the use of PHOs was previously released April 22, 2016, the FDA noted, adding that offenders will face fines of up to NT$3 million (US$100,223).

Trans fats are formed when vegetable oil goes through a process called hydrogenation, which makes the oil more stable and solid at room temperature and increases its shelf-life, the FDA said.

Yan Zong-hai (顏宗海), director of Chang Gung Memorial Hospital's Clinical Toxins Department, said that in addition to cardiovascular disease, international studies show that artificial trans fats can also cause obesity, as well as increasing the risk of fatty liver and Alzheimer's disease.

The main source of artificial trans fats comes from PHOs and are often used in baking and processed foods such as instant coffee and fries, Yen explained.

The move is in line with a measure released by the World Health Organization Monday to eliminate industrially produced trans fatty acids from the global food supply.

(By Chen Wei-ting and William Yen)
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