Posted by: isaaph | October 17, 2007

Rep. Guinigundo Seeks Ban On Trans Fat

Manila, Philippines (AHN) – A congressman has filed a bill before the Philippine House of Representatives which seeks to ban storage, distribution and use of trans- fatty acids being utilized in the preparation of food, drinks, and beverages in restaurants, food chains, and other similar food service facilities or establishments, including manufacturers of food products.

Rep. Magtanggol Gunigundo (2nd District, Valenzuela), author of House Bill 2232, said French fries, fried chicken, cookies, pop-corns, processed junk foods, pastries, among others, which are being served in many food chains, contain trans-fatty acids.

Citing recent studies, Gunigundo warned that “excessive intake of trans fat by more than 0.5 percent everyday is fatal.”

Gunigundo added trans-fat might not only cause serious heart ailments and diabetes in adults but also cause obesity, hypertension and heart diseases.

He said children fond of patronizing fast-food chains are also being exposed to diabetes.

“The immediate phase out of trans fat must be immediately done and should not be put off since a great number of Filipinos are now fond of fast-food meals,” Gunigundo said.

The bill stated that artificial trans-fat refers to an unsaturated or fatty acid that is produced by partial hydrogenation of plant oils. This contains one or more instances of atoms bonded in a trans-configuration.

The trans-fatty acids are usually being used in processed foods such as margarine and fried foods and puddings and commercially baked goods and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils.

The bill provides that it shall be unlawful for Food Service Facilities (FSF’s) or Food Service Establishments (FSE’s) and manufacturers to use trans-fat in the preparation of food for storage, distribution or for selling.

The bill also provides further for penal provision on the person or any business entity, establishment storing or using trans-fatty acids in preparation of food products they serve and sell to the public.

The first offense is penalized with fine of P300,000.00 or imprisonment of not more than one year or both, while second offense, a fine of P400,000.00 or imprisonment of not more than two (2) years or both; For the third offense, in addition to a fine of not more than P500,000.00 or imprisonment of not more than three (3) years or both, the business permits and licenses, in the case of business entity or establishments shall be revoked or cancelled.

This is good news for the Philippine populace. Let us all hope that this bill will be passed.

Source: All Headline News


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