On the motion of Antipolo City Representative Romeo Acop, the House Committee on Health chaired by Batanes Representative Criaco Gato, Jr. moved to ask the House leadership for deliberations on House Bills (HBs) 1282 and 6123 be jointly undertaken by the Committee on Health and the Committee on Agriculture and Food.
Both bills have implications on Republic Act 8172, or the ASIN Law (or the Act promoting Salt Iodization Nationwide). HB 1282 authored by Pangasinan Representative Christopher De Venecia seeks the repeal of HB 8172, while HB 6123, by Leyte Representative Richard Gomez, DPA, seeks to amend RA 8172 by partially requiring producers/manufacturers of food grade salt to comply with the iodization program.
“The bill also seeks to revive the practice of salt makers to make different varieties of salt that are unique to their location.”
De Venecia said HB 1282 seeks to address the challenge for small local farmers to compete with large scale producers, especially in the global market. The bill also seeks to revive the practice of salt makers to make different varieties of salt that are unique to their location, and restore local salt industries, as well as other local businesses that were negatively affected by the passing of the ASIN Law.
Gomez said HB 6123 seeks to relax the universal iodization of salt for subsistence and for small producers/manufacturers of salt in the country. However, large and medium producers/manufacturers would continue to be required to follow iodization standards set by the Bureau of Food and Drugs.
The committee also approved the creation of a technical working group to study and consolidate HBs House Bills 2421, 3354, 3662, 4165, 5571, 6246 and 6520, which shall make mandatory the disclosure of nutritional information in menus of food service establishments.
The HBs were authored by Representatives Wilbert Lee, Patrick Michael Vargas, Alfred Delos Santos, Harris Christopher Ongchuan, Eduardo ‘Bro. Eddie’ Villanueva, Rudys Caesar Fariñas I, and Joseph Gilbert Violago, respectively.
Lee explained that HB 2421 or the proposed “Nutritional information Disclosure Act of 2021” aims to address the problems of obesity, unhealthy diet, and inadequate nutrition among Filipinos.
The bill would mandate the public disclosure of calorie and nutritional information on menus of food service establishments.
“It would enable consumers to make more informed and healthier food choices.”
“It would enable consumers to make more informed and healthier food choices, promote health awareness and proper dieting, as well as assist consumers who are monitoring their diets or dealing with chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes,” Lee explained.