The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) has issued industry guidance for calculating the amount of protein listed on dietary supplement and food labels. The guidance, adopted by the AHPA Board of Trustees at the recommendation of its Sports Nutrition Committee, creates a voluntary standard that will help consumers more easily compare protein levels in different products.
Current Food and Drug Administration (FDA) labeling regulations allow the amount of protein in foods and supplements to be calculated as a factor of nitrogen content, but do not define the sources of nitrogen that should be included in such calculations.
The AHPA Guidance on Labeling of Protein in Food and Dietary Supplements creates a standard by establishing that protein is calculated to include only proteins that are chains of amino acids connected by peptide bonds and to exclude any non-protein nitrogen-containing substances from such calculations. AHPA notes that many companies already use this quantification method and encourages others in the industry to adopt this standard.
"This guidance highlights the industry's ability to identify an issue and collaborate to develop an effective solution," said AHPA President Michael McGuffin. "Members of AHPA's Sports Nutrition Committee have committed to adopting this guidance to help ensure food and supplement labels provide consumers with comparable information needed to make informed purchasing decisions."