Dental Tribune International

FDA proposes new fluoride standard for bottled water

SILVER SPRING, Md., U.S.: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently proposed the lowering of the allowable level of fluoride in bottled water when added by manufacturers. Various studies have found that, while fluoride might help to reduce cavities and dental caries, overexposure to fluoride may lead to dental fluorosis. The FDA’s proposed rule aims to lower the currently allowable levels of fluoride in domestically packaged and imported bottled water with added fluoride to 0.7 mg/L.

The rule is in line with the Public Health Service’s recommendation for community water systems that add fluoride for the prevention of dental caries. In 2015, when the recommendation was made, the FDA advised the bottled water industry that the recommendation should also be considered for their products. Owing to this, many manufacturers of bottled water with added fluoride have already taken steps to reduce fluoride levels.

“Most fluoride added to bottled water is already at or below the limit being proposed. Today’s action, if finalized, is a step toward helping to ensure that bottled water strikes the right fluoride balance by setting out requirements that manufacturers who add fluoride to bottled water must adhere to. By lowering the allowable level of fluoride in bottled water following its addition by the manufacturer, we can help ensure that consumers enjoy the important health benefits of fluoride while preventing overexposure,” said Dr. Susan Mayne, Director of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition of the FDA.

The FDA will be providing the public, industry and other stakeholders with a 60-day period in which to share any comments on the proposed revisions.

The proposal, titled “Proposed rule to revise the allowable level of fluoride in bottled water to which fluoride has been added”, can be accessed here.

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