FDA confirms dietary fiber status of inulin

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes inulin-type fructans derived from chicory root as dietary fiber for the new nutrition facts label. The recognition consolidates the fiber status of chicory root fiber in the US and supports further opportunities for healthy food applications in the US.

The announcement follows a joint citizen petition requesting the addition of chicory root fiber to the list of dietary fibers accepted in the US as well as a comprehensive response to the FDAs scientific review of inulin-type-fructans and data request. In 2015, the FDA issued new Nutrition Facts labeling regulations for food and supplements to be implemented by January 1st, 2020. In the new regulation, dietary fibers are defined as naturally occurring fibers that are intrinsic and intact in plants, or as isolated or synthetic fibers that have demonstrated a beneficial physiological effect.

Carl Volz, President Sensus America, states: “inulin/oligofructose has been clearly shown to support physiological health benefits as assessed by the FDA’s strict criteria”. He adds: “The FDA’s inclusion of chicory root fiber as a dietary fiber in its new food labeling regulations allows our customers to continue marketing their products as sources of dietary fiber and to continue to use chicory root fiber as a tool to reduce calories and added sugar.”

CHIC project aims to develop chicory varieties that can be used to produce dietary fiber with enhanced prebiotic effects to promote gut health.




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What is inulin?

CHIC project aims to develop chicory varieties that can be used to produce dietary fibre with enhanced prebiotic effects to promote gut health.

Inulin is also called chicory root fiber and is present in many fruits and vegetables.

Is it safe to eat and what are the benefits? Learn more about the natural source and the versatility of this ingredient in this video:

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Are you wondering why this European project is called CHIC?

CHIC is the Chicory Innovation Consortium.

Its objective is:

  1. to implement New Plant Breeding Techniques (NPBTs) in chicory in order to establish it as a multipurpose crop for the production of health-related products with clear benefits for consumers, and
  2.  to develop co-innovation pathways with stakeholders for game-changing technologies, such as NPBTs.

CHIC will develop four different NPBTs.

They will be used to steer bioprocesses in chicory and mobilize its under-explored potential to produce immunomodulatory prebiotics and medicinal terpenes.

The conceptually different NPBTs will be assessed with respect to technological potential, risks, regulatory framework and their socio-economic impacts. This will be done in close consultation with a Stakeholder Advisory Group (SAG) composed of relevant stakeholders in industry and society.

Ongoing project activities and results will be discussed with stakeholders and communicated to the  interested public using innovative methods including cultural communication and linking art to science.

In this context, CHIC will develop two business cases in different application areas:

  • inulin as a healthy food ingredient and
  • terpenes as medicinal lead compounds

This effort requires a highly interdisciplinary approach with expertise from molecular sciences, economy, arts, social sciences & humanities, and legislation.

The partnership includes three SMEs and a chicory end-user, and international collaboration is established via a research institute in New Zealand.

The SAG plays a crucial role in consultation in all phases and activities of the project. Via this co-innovation approach, we aim to contribute to leadership in responsible research innovation and to promote improved understanding of plant biotechnology.

Chicory will be boosted as a robust multipurpose crop, tolerant to adverse environmental conditions from which bioactive compounds can be extracted, contributing to sustainable agriculture and a biobased economy.

What is CHIC project?

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