Statement from Dr. Renu Garg, Senior Vice President of Cardiovascular Health at Resolve to Save Lives
“On February 9, Mexico voted unanimously to adopt a best-practice policy to eliminate industrially-produced trans fat from its food supply. With one of the highest burdens of trans fat-attributable deaths in the world, Mexico’s elimination of trans fat will save an estimated 18,000 lives annually and nearly half a million lives cumulatively by 2047, setting a powerful example for the region and world.
“2023 marks the deadline for the World Health Organization’s (WHO) REPLACE initiative to rid the world of artificial trans fat, a chemical known to increase the risk of heart attack and death. Mexico’s new policy—which comes on the heels of Egypt’s recent adoption of a similar regulation—will bring the number of people protected from trans fat to 3.4 billion globally covering 44% of the world’s population, and signals accelerated progress toward the WHO goal.
“By banning partially hydrogenated oils—the main sources of industrially produced trans fat—and setting a limit of 2% trans fat content in all foods, Mexico’s new policy represents a momentous step forward in the global effort to save millions from this toxic and unnecessary food toxin. We look forward to President Andrés Manuel López Obrador formally enacting this law in the weeks ahead, officially adding Mexico to the growing number of countries in the region, including Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and the United States, that have adopted bold policies that prioritize their nation’s heart health.
“Global trans fat elimination can save more than 17 million lives over the next 25 years and prevent at least twice as many heart attacks. More than 2.1 billion people in the top 5 highest burden countries—China, Pakistan, Russia, Iran and Indonesia—are still unprotected by best practice policies resulting in more than 130,000 deaths per year. We encourage countries in the Americas and around the world without best-practice policies to follow Mexico’s lead and take action to protect people from trans fat and accelerate progress toward a trans fat-free world by the end of 2023.”