FDA Allows Label Terminology 'Potassium Salt'

Dec. 29, 2020
Instead of potassium chloride; 3.5-year-old petition from NuTek Food Science finally gets approved.

FDA in December announced a final guidance allowing the use of the term "potassium salt" instead of potassium chloride on food labels, acknowledging the salt substitute could help reduce Americans' intake of potentially dangerous sodium.

NuTek Food Science (now NuTek Natural Ingredients), a key supplier of potassium chloride, filed a citizen petition asking for the change in mid-2016. FDA first considered allowing "potassium chloride salt," but "many comments expressed concerns that declaration of the alternate name 'potassium chloride salt' would be confusing or would not achieve the public health goal of reduced sodium consumption," the agency wrote.

Most food processors supported the change, Campbell Soup among them. Now, FDA announced to food manufacturers "our intent to exercise enforcement discretion" for the name change; in other words, it's allowed. 

"We have made these changes with the following considerations in mind: potential public health benefits to the U.S. population from reduced sodium and increased potassium intake, the recognition that potassium chloride can substitute for sodium chloride in a variety of food manufacturing applications across a number of food categories, and the unlikelihood that the alternate name will mislead consumers."

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