The Government Accountability Office (the "investigative arm" of the US Congress) has issued another of its series of reports on Food Labeling issues. The report is titled "Food Labeling: FDA Needs to Reassess its Approach to Protecting Consumers from False or Misleading Claims" and takes aim at Health Claims, Qualified Health Claims, and Structure / Function Claims.

The full report is posted below.

The report presents, as Appendix I, an analysis of FDA's handling of Health Claims in response to the important Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decision, Pearson v. Shalala, 164 F. 3d 650 (Fed. Cir. 1999).

To assist the reader, we have posted below an open-source version of the Pearson decision to assist the reader in understanding the Appendix. Please note that this version does not use correct Federal Reporter pagination. Due to copyright restrictions we cannot post the version supplied by our commercial legal research service.

Appendix V provides a useful compilation of: (1) the 12 Health Claims permitted under the "significant scientific agreement" standard; and (2) the 5 Health Claims permitted under the "authoritative statement of a scientific body of the US Government or the National Academy of Sciences" standard.