Iowa Public Television


FDA Rejects Proposal to Advertise Lycopene Benefits

posted on November 11, 2005

The Food and Drug Administration this week denied petitions by American Longevity and the Lycopene Health Claim Coalition to advertise cancer-reduction claims on tomato products.

The groups represent tomato producers such as H.J. Heinz Co., among others. They claim that lycopene  the substance that makes tomatoes red  reduces the risk of several types of cancer, including prostate, colon and breast cancer. The groups offered a number of published studies that supported their argument.

In its ruling, the FDA said it will allow a certain limited amount of health claims on packages of tomatoes and tomato sauce, but will not allow the lycopene claims. The FDA said it found the studies inconclusive.

Tags: cancer diseases food news nutrition tomatoes