Home / Bureaucracy / FDA: “No More Trans Fats!” Americans: “No More FDA!”
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FDA: “No More Trans Fats!” Americans: “No More FDA!”

Written by Gary North on November 8, 2013

The Food & Drug Administration has declared that it will require food companies to phase out trans fats.

New York Mayor Bloomberg has publicly taken credit for this.

Here is the world according to the FDA. No more pizzas. No more doughnuts. No more potato chips.

The FDA will mandate substitutes. We know what foods prepared with these substitutes taste like: straw with artificial flavoring.

The FDA has allowed 60 days for comments. The agency will get lots of comments. So will Congress.

This is a classic case of North’s first law of bureaucracy: “Some bureaucrat will eventually enforce a rule, as written, to the point of utter imbecility.” In this case, an entire agency has done it.

The FDA’s Civil Service-protected bureaucrats think they know best. They are convinced that eaters do not know what is good for them. The FDA has no intention of letting eaters decide what to eat. “Diet is too important to be left up to eaters.”

I rarely eat foods with trans fats. But my attitude is simple: it’s up to trans fat eaters to decide. The FDA disagrees.

Agencies eventually overreach themselves. This is such a case. There is going to be a backlash from what can be called the Twinkies bloc. Congress will hear from these people.

The FDA will back off, either voluntarily or by Congressional decree. It will be fun to watch.

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26 thoughts on “FDA: “No More Trans Fats!” Americans: “No More FDA!”

  1. Phillip the Bruce says:

    Does a ban on transfats mean Crisco (and all its imitators) will be banned? Good luck getting that past Monsanto, ADM, Cargill and the rest of Big Agra.

  2. Great point Phillip! It's great to see government agencies and crony capitalists fighting it out…

  3. Nope! Crisco contains no trans fats. Neither does lard. Both have saturated fats, which are good for you. Crisco does have some polyunsaturated fats which not as good as saturated and not as bad as trans fats. Trans fats are produced by hydrogenating a fat or oil to form a solid. Anything with "partially hydrogenated XX oil" in it is to some degree bad for you. Read "The Cholesterol Myth" for a detailed well researched scientific explanation. That said, I agree with Gary. We don't need a nanny state telling us what's good for us and what's not. So far, they have been so medically wrong in their advice that the FDA could be held accountable for a large portion of the so-called "obesity epidemic." Anyone following their nutritional advice for the past 30 years is at risk for hypertension, atherosclerosis, heart attack, stroke and diabetes. Since the government started telling people what they should eat, all of these diseases have increased significantly in incidence.

  4. as North says, should be fun to watch…

  5. What is this? Another war on our kitchens?
    Get out of my kitchen!
    They have NO business telling us what kind of fat, sugar, salt, etc we can or cannot eat!

  6. mike88dante says:

    The PBS News Hour account claimed that the FDA is not proposing to ban naturally occurring trans fats, only those which are chemically constructed by bubbling hydrogen through oils. Thus they would only ban introducing an artificial chemical, which has been shown to be life threatening, into our food. If this News Hour account is accurate, I would think that most people, myself included, would consider this FDA proposal as an appropriate FDA action.

    The FDA representative on the show claimed that the hydrogenated fats are being easily replaced by naturally occurring fats which produce, for example, pizza and popcorn that the public could not distinguish by taste from the chem lab versions. (The legal versions would be equally fattening which, it seems to me, invalidates the :"nanny state" argument.)

  7. Remember the good old days when George Bush was President and we were a free people? See my blog at http://cranky-conservative.blogspot.com

  8. There are a multitude of countries that have massive central governments that dictate all sorts of do & don't. If you like that go there, but let's keep free choice under out Constitution's limits and direction in this country. No entitlement is worth forgoing that right or allowing any government to have that dictatorial power.

  9. I am sick and tired of the Liberal Food Police telling us what we are allowed to eat and what is good for us! If the FDA REALLY cared about us, they would ban GMOs or at least LABEL GMOs so that we can make an educated CHOICE!

  10. Obama is just finishing what Bush started.

  11. The FDuh has been telling us what foods we should and shouldn't (read: can and can't) eat for a long time. Just look at the fight over raw milk. The entire onus for that debacle is on the fda. Raw milk is one of the healthiest foods on the planet and people were drinking it long before the fduh nannied their way around everyone's personal choices. Transfats are no different – if people want them they should be able to have them, good or bad. It's called choice. Free choice, I thought – but then again our freedoms are eroding on a grand scale and most people don't even notice.

  12. So when trans-fat came out Libertarians were up in arm about this new "fake, dangerous" fat yet it's going to be banned suddenly Libertarians find this fat magically beneficial? I think its good proof to have such professionalism out of lay hands to stop quacks and conspiracy theorists from muddying the waters.

  13. Texas Chris says:

    Well, in that case, show us where in the constitution the federal government is granted the express authority to regulate food, drugs, or agriculture? I mean, if it's for our own good, then the founding father clearly would have delegated that power tot he federal government…

  14. Texas Chris says:

    "Libertarians" who were up in arms over trans fats weren't calling for government regulation. Anyone who was wasn't a libertarian in the first place.

  15. Doug Smith says:

    It's not even if it's good or bad for you!, It's the fact that the government's unconstitutional FDA is trying to be "Big Brother". There should be NO involvement in what I eat/want/do as an individual (that doesn't affect anyone else). MY CHOICE NOT GOVTS. the FDA is the biggest problem with health care in the US today. If the medical field was free of govt. control, (imagine 'free enterprise / open competition') we wouldn't need all this insurance BS. Competitive cost shopping would find medical services affordable !!….. NO TO FDA, EPA, HHS, DEA, etc. etc.
    none of which are allowable under the Constitution !

  16. mike88dante says:

    The founding fathers did delegate that power to the federal government in the commerce clause Art. 1, Section 8 3 of the Constitution.

    I won't argue with your right to produce hydrogenated fats in your basement and use it in your own cooking. But regulating the shipment of goods containing hydrogenated fats across state lines for sale is clearly covered in the Constitution. If you believe that pure food and drug laws are unconstitutional, I suspect that you are part of a very tiny minority.

  17. Trans fats are awful, but government regulation is worse. I can choose to not eat trans fats. I can't choose to ignore government.

  18. Yes, we should decide? But they don’t give us a choice Big Mac! I want to eat a donut, or say a “chip” but they don’t sell the ones WITHOUT trans fat.

    Maybe, they will make them boiled in “proper” oil but you and I are GONNA PAY FOR IT!

  19. It's time to nullify the FDA along with the other unelected bureaucrats. http://tenthamendmentcenter.com/2012/11/14/nullif

  20. those interpretations of the "commerce clause" are false. The FedGov were charged with "regulating" interstate commerce…. regulate, in this instance, has the same meaning it does in the Second Article lf Ammendment when it refers to a "well regulated" militia. The word has the same sense as used when speaking of "regulating" a clock or other piece of machinery. It means "make regular", make it function well. It does NOT mean pormulgaing millions of pages of :regulations" as in rules, requirements, micromanaging, etc. Go back to the Filburn case the SCOTUS butchered back in about 1934. One of the most insane judgements they've ever made (on par with Kelo, Lawrence, Roe)That court sold the entire USA down the river, and ever since FedGov have expanded to micromanage anything they wish.. if it COULD have moved in interstate commerce, or even did not and could not have, but made it so something else did or didn't, they can manage it. Time to turn off this stupidity. So, no, FedGov have NO authority to regulate ANY aspect of anything we do or don't put into our mouths. This sort of thing is the very sort of tyranny our forefathers had done wiht, and took up arms to chase off this continent.

  21. When Uncle Stupid's FDA decide they have to de-list Plan B for over the counter dsitribution, disapprove HFCS for human food, require ALL vaccines beproduced WITHOUT any mercury compounds whatever, label GMO foods (I mean, simply detail on the ingredients when one is GMO.. such as HFCS (GMO), whole wheat flour, yellow cornmeal (GMO), organic spelt…… oh, and delist almost all of the chemical sweeteners that often have more health risks than cane., beet, honey, OR HFCS. Perhaps THEN they will occupy a high enough moral ground to give them a plausible voice on what sorts of fats we may/mayn't ingest.

  22. I understand that the Mexicans are building a tunnel to smuggle Doritos right now in anticipation of the banning trans fats

  23. mike88dante says:

    I think we have to choose between a government limited by law or government that is limited only only by the power of whomever is dominant at the moment. The Constitution established a Supreme Court with jurisdiction that "shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution."

    If you or I insist that we are qualified to judge the constitutionality of laws, we have no right to deny that qualification to whatever tyrant has the most power at a given moment. I may agree with you that the commerce clause was extended too far in the 30's but at the moment the law of the land with respect to the commerce clause is what the SCOTUS says it is. If we try to change it by any other means than by convincing the SCOTUS to revisit and modify the previous ruling we are claiming the right to turn our Republic into a banana Republic, to be run by whomever has the best equipped private army.

    By the way, even by your interpretation of what "regulate" means, I would suggest that allowing anyone to put whatever they want into our food is not conducive to making commerce "function well."

  24. I waste alot of time reading fine print on food lables tring to avoid TRANS FATS!
    It' hard to find healthy food, I hate junk food, OBEASE fat people & the burden they impose on tax payer funded emergency rooms! You don't need trans fats for Pizza, just for long shelf life, may be ok for the 1% that have boom shelters.
    You can't even get real healthy butter on popcorn at a movie. Dairy framers are going out of business.
    Its hard to find peanut butter without this crap in it & its NOT FOOD!
    At least Tax obease junk foods like is done with tabacoo! If they can't be outlawed yet. I hate over salted & sugared foods as well.
    signed, part Libatirian

  25. Corsaunts taste as good as or better than donuts & don't have Trans Fats!

    Trans Fats = Not Food

  26. would you allow your child to decide what he eats?- no, so why do we allow the american people to decide—they too are children.