Consultation on Draft Food (Amendment) Regulations 2020: Ban on partially hydrogenated oils as an ingredient in all foods sold in Singapore

Singapore Food Agency

Ministry of Health, Health Promotion Board and Singapore Food Agency

Consultation Period: 13 Mar 2020 - 12 May 2020
Status: Closed

Aim

1. The Ministry of Health (MOH), Health Promotion Board (HPB), and Singapore Food Agency (SFA) are seeking feedback from stakeholders on proposed amendments to the Food Regulations to introduce a ban on the use of partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) as an ingredient in all fats, oils and pre-packaged foods sold in Singapore from June 2021.

 

Background

2. Trans fat consumption is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular diseases. There is no safe level of consumption of trans fat1 , 2 . A meta-analysis of four prospective cohort studies  involving nearly 140,000 subjects found that a four-grams increase in daily trans fat intake was associated with a 23% increase in incidence of cardiovascular disease3. As part of the Singapore’s Government ongoing efforts to create a healthier environment for Singaporeans, the Ministry of Health announced on 6 June 2019 its decision to introduce a ban on PHOs, the key source of artificial trans fat in our diets. This will apply to all foods sold in Singapore, including fats, oils, and pre-packaged foods, whether locally manufactured or imported from overseas; and will replace the existing 2% limit on trans fat content in fats and oils sold in Singapore.

 

Proposed amendments

3. To give effect to the above, MOH, HPB and SFA propose to:

a. insert, immediately after regulation 36, the following sub-heading and regulation:

Partially Hydrogenated Oils

b. Delete Regulation 78(3) of the Food Regulations which provides that prepacked fats and oils for sale or for use as an ingredient in the preparation of foods shall not contain trans fatty acids at levels exceeding 2% (w/w);

c. Shift the definition of trans fatty acids currently in Regulation 78(4) to Regulation 2(1) of the Food Regulations, and delete Regulation 78(4);

d. Amend the First Schedule of the Food Regulations by deleting the following item:

 Substance

  Generic Terms

 “Any deodorised
edible vegetable oil,
whether
hydrogenated or
not, when forming
an ingredient of any
food other than
edible fats and oils

 Vegetable oil/fat
qualified by the words
‘hydrogenated’ or
‘partially-hydrogenated’
as appropriate.”,

  and substituting the following item:

 “Any deodorised edible
vegetable oil that is fully
hydrogenated or not
hydrogenated, when forming
an ingredient of any food
other than edible fats and
oils

 Vegetable oil/fat qualified by
the words ‘fully
hydrogenated’ if
appropriate.”.

 

4. The proposed amendments will be published in the Gazette in June 2020, and come into operation in June 2021.

 

Request for comments

5. MOH, HPB and SFA invite views and comments on the proposed amendments to the Food Regulations as described in paragraphs 3 to 4 above. Procedure and timeframe for submitting views and comments.

6. All submissions should be clearly and concisely written, and should provide a reasoned explanation for any proposed revisions.

7. Submissions should reach MOH no later than 60 days from the date of notification, through mail, or email, to the following addresses:

Mail:

Epidemiology and Disease Control Division
Ministry of Health

16 College Road
College of Medicine Building
Singapore 169854

 

Email:
transfatban@hpb.gov.sg


1 Mozaffarian et al (2009) Health effects of trans-fatty acids: experimental and observational evidence. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition 63, S5-S21.

2 World Health Organization. (2016) Effects of trans fatty acids intake on blood lipids and lipoproteins: A systematic review and meta-regression analysis.

3 Mozaffarian et al. (2006) Trans Fatty Acids and Cardiovascular Disease. New England Journal of Medicine, 354(15), 1601–1613.