As reported on Dec. 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is extending the comment period on its preliminary determination that partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs), the primary dietary source of artificial trans fat in processed foods, are not “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) for use in food. The agency announced today that the Federal Register notice extending the comment period is on display (see docket FDA-2013-N-1317) and will publish tomorrow (Dec. 31).

The comment period is being extended by 60 days, to March 8, 2014. This extension is being provided in response to numerous stakeholder requests to provide additional time for comments.

FDA originally published a notice in the Federal Register on Nov. 8, announcing its preliminary determination. The agency provided 60 days, until Jan. 7, 2014, for interested persons to provide comments and scientific data pertaining to the notice, including specific issues that FDA sought comments on such as possible alternative approaches, time needed for reformulation, burden on small businesses, and other technical challenges to removal of PHOs from the food supply.

Comments may be submitted electronically to the FDA docket on, Use docket number FDA-2013-N-1317.

To submit comments by mail, send to FDA at:

Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305)
Food and Drug Administration
5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061
Rockville, MD 20852

All submissions must include the agency name and docket number.