Danone North America

FDA Approves Qualified Health Claim Linking Yogurt and Reduced Type 2 Diabetes

March 1, 2024
The agency responded to a petition from Danone North America, finding the claim was supported by scientific evidence but not enough to merit an unqualified health claim.

The FDA today (March 1) responded positively to a health claim petition from Danone North America asking to use a qualified health claim linking consumption of yogurt and reduced risk of type 2 diabetes.

The FDA said in a letter of enforcement discretion that it “does not intend to object to the use of certain qualified health claims” — meaning the agency found the claim to be sufficiently supported by scientific evidence but it did not meet the more rigorous “significant scientific agreement” standard required for a fully authorized health claim.

The health claim can be applied to “all types of yogurts that meet the FDA’s standard of identity” provided that the qualified health claims are worded so as not to mislead consumers, and that other factors for the use of the claim are met.

“The petition also noted that the evidence supports the health effects of yogurt as a food rather than related to any single nutrient or compound and thus is independent of fat or sugar content,” the agency wrote.

The FDA considers two cups (three servings) per week of yogurt to be the minimum amount for this qualified health claim. The approved wordings are:

* “Eating yogurt regularly, at least 2 cups (3 servings) per week, may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. FDA has concluded that there is limited information supporting this claim."

* “Eating yogurt regularly, at least 2 cups (3 servings) per week, may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes according to limited scientific evidence.”

“This new claim has been nearly five years in the making,” said a spokesperson for Danone. “Given qualified health claims are not announced often (there have only been 10 others in the past 10 years), this is significant news for both consumers and the yogurt category alike.”

About the Author

Dave Fusaro | Editor in Chief

Dave Fusaro has served as editor in chief of Food Processing magazine since 2003. Dave has 30 years experience in food & beverage industry journalism and has won several national ASBPE writing awards for his Food Processing stories. Dave has been interviewed on CNN, quoted in national newspapers and he authored a 200-page market research report on the milk industry. Formerly an award-winning newspaper reporter who specialized in business writing, he holds a BA in journalism from Marquette University. Prior to joining Food Processing, Dave was Editor-In-Chief of Dairy Foods and was Managing Editor of Prepared Foods.

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