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WHO Needs to Adhere to the DQA
The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) is supporting a recommendation from the World Health Organization (WHO) “that governments around the world phase out partially hydrogenated oils if trans-fat labeling alone doesn’t spur significant reductions in their use.”

The WHO recommendation is part of an action plan that “also calls for a series of food labeling reforms, including restrictions on ‘trans-fat-free’ claims on foods that are high in saturated fat; consistent rules for health claims in food advertising and labeling; and requirements for food labels to disclose the percentage of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and added sugar when companies make marketing claims about those ingredients.”

However, CSPI overlooks the fact that the US government cannot rely on any report that does not comply with the Data Quality Act. As CRE previously explained to USDA, HHS, WHO and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), “Before USDA and HHS are, under the Data Quality Act, legally able to rely on any of the facts and analyses supporting the scientific recommendations in the WHO Report, both USDA and HHS will have to carry out a predissemination review....”

CRE recommended “that the Secretaries of USDA and HHS also write to” WHO and FAO “to point out that the U.S. Government...cannot base their policy decisions on any facts and analyses supporting scientific recommendations stated in a WHO Report...until the facts and analyses supporting scientific recommendations...can be meet the U.S. Government’s data quality standards.”

The US government agreed with CRE and wrote to WHO transmitting a copy of the HHS Data Quality guidelines and explaining “under the U.S. Data Quality Act, USG agencies operate under guidelines for ensuring and maximizing the quality...of information disseminated to the public.” The letter also explained that the “consultation process of the development of the WHO/FAO Report and the resulting Report itself would not meet these current U.S. data quality standards...”

If the WHO and other international organizations would like the US government to be potentially able to act on their reports, they will need to start complying with the US Data Quality Act.

  • See CSPI press release
  • See CRE letter to HHS and USDA
  • See CRE Letter to WHO and FAO
  • See HHS Letter to WHO

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