Industry responds to revised standards for follow-up formula

The adoption which has been renamed to ‘The Standard for Follow-up Formula for Older Infants and Product for Young Children’, was finalised on 28th​ November, following Codex Alimentarius Commission meetings held in Rome at the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) headquarters this week.

The revision​ is intended to ensure that follow-up formula available for older infants aged 6-13 months will support growth and development, whilst products for young children aged 12-26 months meets their requirements. This has involved the reduction of energy requirements to 60-70 kcal/100ml and protein requirements to a minimum of 1.8g/100kcal for young children, whilst fine-tuning lipid levels and establishing maximum limits for available carbohydrates. 

Further reviews and controls over included ingredients have been confirmed, such as the restriction of the use of the food additive trisodium citrate within sterilised and UHT milk following years of differing opinions over the technological justification for its inclusion.

In addition, new labelling standards were determined related to text, images, and colours used, taking into account the recommendations of the WHO International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and the WHO guidance on Ending the Inappropriate Promotion of Foods for Infants and Young Children. The standards are intended to ensure consumers are clearly able to distinguish between infant formula, follow-up formula for older infants, product for young children, and formula for special medical purposes intended for infants.