Process for the Assessment of Scientific Support for Claims on Foods (PASSCLAIM) – Phase One: Preparing the Way

European Journal of Nutrition. 2003;42(1):3-119

The ILSI Europe Functional Foods Task Force is coordinated the EC Concerted Action Process for the Assessment of Scientific Support for Claims on Foods (PASSCLAIM).

PASSCLAIM aims to establish criteria for the scientific support for health claims for foods. The Phase One Individual Theme Group (ITG) papers on diet-related cardiovascular disease, bone health and osteoporosis, physical performance and fitness, and review of existing processes were published in the European Journal of Nutrition, together with the summary report of the First Plenary meeting including a set of interim criteria to scientifically substantiate claims on foods.

Three ITG papers describe what needs to be done in terms of scientific research and how claims should be scientifically justified in the key areas for the development of enhanced function or reduction of disease risk claims. More specifically, the papers describe the (potential) types of claims from the perspective of the function related to the physiological area. They also describe the general principles which would be needed to support these claims and to evaluate the rationale of the scientific support.

Furthermore, the papers assessed the usability of the markers (and their validation) used for the scientific substantiation of the claims. The fourth ITG papers review the current global situation in terms of schemes to regulate claims and other similar systems and concepts, which are universally applied. The resulting set of interim criteria as published in the current publication have been used by four new “Phase Two” theme groups concerned with insulin sensitivity and risk of diabetes, diet-related cancer, mental state and performance and gut health and immunity. The Phase Two ITG papers and the set of wider interim criteria have been published in a second PASSCLAIM publication in 2004.

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