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French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety

Foods for very young children are added to the CIQUAL table of the nutritional composition of foods

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News of 13/02/2014

At ANSES, the French Observatory of Food Quality (CIQUAL-OQALI) populates and manages the CIQUAL table, a reference data base on the nutritional composition of foods. New data have been added to it and are available as of today. The CIQUAL table now provides the full nutritional profile for a large number of foods consumed by children from birth to 3 years of age.

 

At ANSES, the French Observatory of Food Quality (CIQUAL-OQALI) populates and manages the CIQUAL table, a reference data base on the nutritional composition of foods.

In order to complete its data base, ANSES has conducted a representative sampling of the current market and a nutritional analysis of foods for children from birth to 3 years of age.

Now the CIQUAL table provides a full nutritional profile (calorie count, fat, carbohydrate and vitamin content, etc.) of infant milk formulas, sweet and savoury baby foods and dishes, soups, dairy-based desserts, instant cereals, biscuits, and fruit, plant and milk-based beverages and cereals.

 

Today CIQUAL provides information on 1500 foods and 58 nutrients

The CIQUAL table now contains 1500 foods and 58 nutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, fats, etc.). Accessible free of charge and fully downloadable from the ANSES website, it is a useful reference tool for all those who would like to better understand the foods they eat, and now also the foods their children eat.

In addition to the integration of these new foods in the table, and in order to more effectively respond to the needs of users, another new element has been added this year: the two forms of vitamin K (vitamins K1 and K2), which play an important role in blood coagulation, are now distinguished from each other.

All the data is available on the dedicated CIQUAL website and as OpenData.

 

Nutritional comparison between infant foods and conventional foods

A comparison between conventional foods and infant foods with limited processing - such as fruit juices and compotes - as well as biscuits, was conducted. On a nutritional level, no significant differences were found between the conventional and infant versions for these types of foods.

However, it is difficult to compare more highly processed foods such as baby food or savoury dishes, since they have no relevant equivalents in the conventional food category.

 

New tools for measuring the nutritional intakes of children from birth to 3 years

This initial CIQUAL data on the nutritional composition of infant foods will be supplemented this year by a study from the French Observatory of Food Quality (OQALI) which will analyse the nutritional information on the packaging of these products.

These CIQUAL data, along with those concerning children from 0-3 years of age which will be obtained from the Third Individual National Survey on Food Consumption (INCA 3), are new tools which will help ANSES to accurately assess the nutritional intakes of young children in the French population.

As for physico-chemical risks, they are being studied in the framework of the Infant Total Diet Study (iTDS), which is currently being conducted and whose results will be published in early 2015.