Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of a health claim related to increasing maternal folate status by supplemental folate intake and reduced risk of neural tube defects pursuant to Article 14 of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006

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Article
Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies
Acknowledgements

The Panel wishes to thank the members of the Working Group on Claims: Carlo Agostoni, Jean-Louis Bresson, Susan Fairweather-Tait, Marina Heinonen, Ambroise Martin, Hildegard Przyrembel, Yolanda Sanz, Alfonso Siani, Anders Sjödin, Sean (J.J.) Strain, Inge Tetens, Hendrik Van Loveren, Hans Verhagen and Peter Willatts for the preparatory work on this scientific opinion.

EFSA Journal
EFSA Journal 2013;11(7):3328 [9 pp.].
doi
10.2903/j.efsa.2013.3328
Panel members at the time of adoption
Carlo Agostoni, Roberto Berni Canani, Susan Fairweather-Tait, Marina Heinonen, Hannu Korhonen, Sébastien La Vieille, Rosangela Marchelli, Ambroise Martin, Androniki Naska, Monika Neuhäuser-Berthold, Grażyna Nowicka, Yolanda Sanz, Alfonso Siani, Anders Sjödin, Martin Stern, Sean (J.J.) Strain, Inge Tetens, Daniel Tomé, Dominique Turck and Hans Verhagen
Contact
Type
Opinion of the Scientific Committee/Scientific Panel
On request from
Competent Authority of the United Kingdom following an application by Rank Nutrition Ltd
Question Number
EFSA-Q-2013-00265
Adopted
10 July 2013
Published
26 July 2013
Affiliation
European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy
Note
Abstract

Following an application from Rank Nutrition Ltd, submitted for authorisation of a health claim pursuant to Article 14 of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006 via the Competent Authority of the United Kingdom, the EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) was asked to deliver an opinion on the scientific substantiation of a health claim related to increasing maternal folate status by supplemental folate intake and reduced risk of neural tube defects. The Panel considers that the food constituent, supplemental folate, which is the subject of the claim, is sufficiently characterised. Increasing maternal folate status by supplemental folate intake is a beneficial physiological effect in the context of reducing the risk of neural tube defects. In weighing the evidence, the Panel took into account that the association between low maternal folate intakes and an increased risk of neural tube defects is well established, and that a recent systematic review showed an effect of maternal folic acid intakes on the risk of neural tube defects. The Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has been established between increasing maternal folate status by supplemental folate intake and a reduced risk of neural tube defects.

Keywords
Folate, neural tube defects, NTD, health claims
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Number of Pages
9