Magic sugar’ allowed but needs authorization, says FDA

The Food and Drug Administration will allow the use of "magic sugar" in the country, according to a statement released by acting FDA director Kenneth Hartigan-Go Monday.

It also follows that the Bureau of Food and Drugs Advisory No. 2000-05 will be revoked. According to the statement, “All those selling this product are ordered to apply for market authorizations from the FDA to ensure proper label and safe use of the product.”

Hartigan-Go said this was finally allowed by the Codex Standard 192-1995 on Additives Permitted for Use Under Specified Conditions in Certain food Categories or Individual Food Items, and other provisions of Codex General Standard for Food Additives.

Codex was created by the Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization to protect the health of consumers to ensure fair practices in the international trade in food through standards, codes of practice, guidelines and other recommendations.

"Magic sugar" is an artificial non-caloric sweetening agent which is chemically known as sodium cyclamate, cyclamic acid or calcium cyclamate.

Despite the findings that it can cause urinary bladder tumors in laboratory rats, it was marketed in several countries but not in the Philippines.

Prior to this advisory, cyclamate is approved for use in more than 100 countries including Europe, Canada and Australia.

Several reviews made by WHO and FAO Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives and European Food Safety Authority showed that in these countries, there have been no safety concerns among its millions of consumers.

Maximum level of magic sugar in food is contained in the GSFA. To ensure the safe use of "magic sugar," all food processors are advised to adhere to the Codex standard and to declare the use of artificial sweeteners and to print the proper use.

All FDA food inspectors are ordered to monitor if all magic sugars sold in outlets and used by food processors are authorized by the FDA.

Philippines News agency