‘Healthy cola’ wins FOSHU approval in Japan

By Ankush Chibber

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Nutrition Japan

Japan clears the way for ‘healthy cola’ with FOSHU approval
Japan's food safety and regulatory authority has given its approval to a ‘healthy’ cola drink, the first of its kind in the country.

Kirin Mets Cola, a cola drink made in Japan, has won a hard–to-achieve Foods for Specified Health Users (FOSHU) certification.

The cola is manufactured by the Kirin Beverage Co, part of the Kirin Group, which is also the maker of two of the most popular beers in Japan – Kirin Lager, the country's oldest beer brand, and Ichiban Shibo via another subsidiary – as well as many other non-alcoholic beverages and food products.

According to Japan's Health and Nutrition Food Association (JHNFA), Kirin Mets Cola was awarded the FOSHU certification because it contained no sugar but did contain an indigestible form of Dextrin, a fibre supplement, which restricts the body's ability to absorb fat while eating. 

“The key factor here is that when consumed as part of a diet with a high amount of fat, the cola slows down the body's ability to absorb fat. This helps the person avoid putting on weight,”​ a JHFNA spokesperson told FoodNavigator-Asia.

Japan’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare introduced the FOSHU system in 1991 after which about 1000 products have been given the FOSHU label in Japan. This is the fist cola.

“Our system is based on scientific evidence on the quality, safety and effectiveness of each individual product. It’s a strict and long process, and we have not ever approved a cola before. But this product cleared our clinical trials and well as tests on individual ingredients,”​ the JHFNA spokesperson said. 

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