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Pitta bread and bagels 370.(Photo by: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Ministry approves whole-grain food logo
Symbol will distinguish whole-wheat from rolls or bread with caramel or other coloring to make them look like whole wheat.
A symbol that will be affixed to products made from whole-wheat – to distinguish them from rolls or bread with caramel or other coloring to make it look like whole wheat – will be instituted by the Health Ministry, it was announced on Sunday.

The ministry said it will make it possible for manufacturers and importers to use a symbol for whole wheat to encourage the public to consume it; the eating of whole-wheat rather than white-flour products has been shown to reduce the risk of obesity and type II diabetes.

The ministry also said that it will encourage the companies to lower the prices on whole-wheat baked goods. At present, they are more expensive, even though bleaching natural flour so it becomes white is a more expensive procedure than leaving it alone.

The ministry said it would give authorization for use of the symbol to bread manufacturers and marketers, including bakeries, factories, grocery stores, supermarkets and cafes that meet all the requirements for its relevant products.

The logo/symbol will also state that “This bread meets the Health Ministry standards for proper nutrition.”

Manufacturers of packaged baked products containing whole-wheat flour may place the logo on the package and prominently on displays next to where unwrapped baked goods are sold.

There will be several criteria for the symbol — for baked goods with at least 80 percent of the flour whole-wheat; if the maximum about of sodium (salt) is 400 mg. per 100 gr. of baked goods; if the maximum number of calories is 250 per 100 gr. of baked goods; and if the nutrition values are within the permitted limits set down in 1993.

The manufacturer/merchant must provide documentation that his products have met these requirements, including the contents of the products. The ministry will be permitted to take samples of the products to ensure that the requirements are met and prohibit the use of the logo if the product does not meet them.
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