I am speaking at the Con Edison Science, Technology, Energy, Environment, and Math (STEEM) Distinguished Lecturer series on “Food Politics 2020: Food Industry Influence on Nutrition Research and Practice.” It’s from 12:15-1:30 pm at the Science Building, C-201. Details are here.
Is SmartCandy smart policy?
I was surprised by FoodNavigator-USA’s story about “SmartCandy,”—a “vitamin-infused snack.”
Could the name and contents of this candy be violating the FDA’s “jelly bean” rule?
The “jelly bean” rule refers to FDA’s fortification policy,* which aims to discourage food and beverage makers from adding vitamins to “foods of minimal nutritional value” (a.k.a. junk foods) so they can be marketed as healthy.
The policy is explicit. The FDA does not consider it appropriate to add nutrients to candies and beverages.
Here’s what the article says about what’s in it:
Smartcandy is formulated with a blend of Vitamin A for eye health, three B vitamins to support converting sugar and carbohydrates into sustained energy, and vitamin C for immunity. The trans fat-, high-fructose corn syrup-free candies come in four varieties: sweet and sour gummies; and Froot, a proprietary snack with a candy shell and a layer of yogurt encasing a strawberry or orange center.
Here’s the Nutrition Facts label (thanks to a reader for sending).
Here’s what the website says Orange Froot candy can do:
This is the visionary leader of the snacking world, it’s the one they listen to and admire. He can make a three point shot with his eyes closed, build the best fort you’ve ever seen, or solve an algebra question like it was a nursery rhyme, this flavor packed snack will push you to achieve anything!
If SmartCandy can get away with this, won’t Coca-Cola and Pepsi be next?
Candy is candy and has an place in kids’s diets—occasionally. But a health food that makes kids do better in school? I’d like to see the evidence for that.
FDA: take a look please.
*Thanks to Michael Jacobson for forwarding.
Update, April 13: The New York State Attorney General has filed a complaint.