FDA Ruling Could Interfere with Soymilk Labeling

(Washington, DC) – July 17, 2018 – The Soyfoods Association of North America believes the Trump Administration’s plan to “crack down” on the use of the term “milk” for non-dairy products such as soy is unnecessary.

“The term “soymilk” is not false or misleading,” said John Cox, SANA Executive Director. “Consumers are accustomed to using products with names similar to other foods, such as peanut butter, almond butter, or apple butter. As we all know, these products don’t contain dairy-derived butter, but no one is confused as to the contents of either product.”

In Tuesday’s Politico Pro Summit, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb stated the agency’s goal to enforce standards of identity that define how foods are labeled for consumers. However, SANA believes that this action is unnecessary because of the long-standing use of the term “milk” to represent plant-based products.

Soymilk has a long history, originating in Northern China as early as AD 25. The term “soymilk” has been in commercial use since 1947 and has been included in USDA materials dating back to 1963.

SANA petitioned the FDA in 1997 asking the agency to formally recognize soymilk as the common or usual name of this well-known product.