COMMITTEE ON NUTRITION
"BABY FOODS" have been regarded as "Food for Special Dietary Uses" under federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act regulations that have been in effect since 1942. The current revision of the FDA regulations proposes to continue this classification (Federal Register, December 14, 1966; 31 F.R. 15730).
A recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine objects to classifying infant foods as "Food for Special Dietary Uses" in the recently proposed revision of the federal Food and Drug regulations. The authors appear to be unaware that "baby foods" have been regarded as "Food for Special Dietary Uses" for a quarter of a century. The proposed revisions make no substantive changes in the current regulations affecting "baby foods."
In practical terms, this section of the regulations provides that if a food represented by the manufacturer for use by infants. specifically those less than 12 months of age, contains two or more ingredients, these shall be listed on the label. The label needs to indicate the specific plant or animal source of each ingredient and the common or usual name of each ingredient, including spices, flavorings, and colorings. This is important since typical "baby foods" may contain as many as 10 to 12 ingredients in addition to the principal one. They may combine a variety of additives, including flavoring agents, preservatives, antioxidants, emulsifiers, nutrients, and special fat ingredients.
Special feeding problems are of common occurrence in pediatric practice. It is impossible for the physician to identify the cause of food idiosyncrasy unless he has knowledge of the specific nature of all food consumed.
- Copyright © 1967 by the American Academy of Pediatrics