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South Korea Optimizes the Regulation of General Food with Functional Claims

On March 8, 2023, the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) released the amendments to the Regulation on Exceptions of Prohibited Labels and Advertisements of Food Function Claims1

What this regulation is about:  

On December 29, 2020, MFDS introduced the Regulation on Exceptions of Prohibited Labels and Advertisements of Food Function Claims. This regulation firstly permitted the general food to label with the "function claims", which was only applied to "health functional food (dietary supplement)" before, opening more opportunities to the food industry and benefitting the general food companies. The regulation specifies the function scope for general foods as well as the allowable contents of the functional ingredients in general foods. (Check here to find out the detailed interpretation of the regulation)

The new revision mainly optimizes the ambiguous requirements in the regulation to better guide the industry.

First, when setting the functional material's recommended daily intake amount, the daily intake of "individually recognized ingredient" newly becomes a reference in addition to recommended daily intake. Previously, the contents of the functional ingredients were required to “exceed 30% of the recommended daily intake stipulated in Health Functional Food Code2, whilst less than the maximum permissible contents”. Under the new version, the functional material’s daily intake in the general food with functional claims can also be more than 30% of the daily intake of the “individually recognized ingredients”.

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