Skip to main content
Food Standards Australia New Zealand Logo

Glossary

This document contains definitions for some of the terms used in these explanatory notes. More information is available in the individual topic pages.

Active ingredients The therapeutically active ingredients found in dietary supplements, including nutrient substances as well as ingredients that contribute caffeine and cholesterol.
AUST-L A unique numeric code found on a dietary supplement label which indicates the dietary supplement is listed on the Therapeutic Goods Administration Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods.
Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is Australia's official national statistical agency. ABS was responsible for managing the 2011–13 Australian Health Survey (AHS), including the collection, compilation, analysis and publication of AHS data. 
Australian Health Survey, 2011-13 (AHS) The 2011–13 Australian Health Survey (AHS) is made up of three components:
  • 2011–12 National Health Survey (NHS)
  • 2011–12 National Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey (NNPAS)
  • 2011–12 National Health Measures Survey (NHMS)
The AHS also includes equivalent surveys conducted on a representative sample of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People. These are:
  • 2012–13 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey (NATSIHS)
  • 2012–13 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey (NATSINPAS)
  • 2012–13 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Measures Survey (NATSIHMS)
Read more about the AHS
Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG) The Australia Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG) provides a list of therapeutic goods that can be lawfully supplied in Australia. The ARTG is managed by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and includes information on the product name and formulation details along with the company and manufacturer details.
AUSNUT 1999 The nutrient database developed for estimating food and nutrient intakes from the 1995 National Nutrition Survey (NNS). It contains nutrient profiles for 4,554 foods and 30 nutrients.
AUSNUT 2007 The nutrient database developed for estimating food, dietary supplement and nutrient intakes from the 2007 Australian National Children's Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey (ANCNPAS). The food nutrient database contains nutrient profiles for 3,874 foods and 37 nutrients. The dietary supplement nutrient database contains nutrient profiles for 351 dietary supplements and 28 nutrients.
AUSNUT 2011–13 AUSNUT 2011–13 contains all the data needed to help the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) turn the food and dietary supplement consumption information collected from the AHS into food, dietary supplement and nutrient intakes. It also contains information to help users interpret our data and to allow the data to be compared with older survey databases.

The complete AUSNUT 2011–13 contains the following 11 files:
  • Food details file – descriptive information on 5,740 foods and beverages
  • Food nutrient database – 53 nutrient values for each of the 5,740 foods and beverages
  • Food recipe file – ingredient information on the 3,650 food and beverage recipes  
  • Food retention factor file – information on the recipe factors
  • Food measures database – 16,152 measures for the 5,740 foods and beverages
  • Dietary supplement details file – descriptive information on 2,163 dietary supplements
  • Dietary supplement nutrient database – 35 nutrient values for each of the 2,163 dietary supplements
  • Dietary supplement recipe file – ingredient information on 18 dietary supplement recipes
  • Food and dietary supplement classification system
  • 1995 NNS and 2011–13 AHS food classification concordance file
  • AUSNUT 2011–13 – AUSNUT 1999 Matching File
Australian National Children's Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2007 (ANCNPAS) The 2007 Australian National Children's Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey (ANCNPAS) was conducted in 2007 by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). The survey collected demographic information, two days of food and dietary supplement intake data and physical activity information for 4,487 children aged 2–16 years. Data was collected between February and August 2007.
Coded or coding The process of matching a food, dietary supplement or portion reported in the AHS to a food/dietary supplement descriptor with an associated nutrient profile, measure and classification code in AUSNUT 2011–13.
Core dataset The underlying analytical dataset from which nutrient profiles for foods and beverages consumed during the AHS were developed.
Density Density expresses the mass of a substance in a given volume, with units of grams per millilitre (g/mL). The density of a food is influenced by its chemical composition, such as how much salt, sugar, fat or ethanol it contains. It is also influenced by the way it is cut such as whether it is grated or diced and how much of it is packed into a container.

For many liquid foods, the value provided for density represents the specific gravity of the liquid determined using established laboratory techniques.
Dietary supplement For the purpose of the AHS, dietary supplements refer to those products defined as Complementary Medicines under the Therapeutic Goods Regulations 1990 and that are not products intended for inhalation or use on the skin. They include products containing ingredients that are nutrients, such as multivitamin or fish oil products.
Excipient ingredient Ingredients found in dietary supplements that do not have a therapeutic role. Instead they might be added to help bind or dissolve a dietary supplement or be used to add colour.
Fat factor A fat factor is used to calculate the mass of fatty acids in a food, when a laboratory reports fatty acid composition in terms of percentages of fatty acids.

For example:

Linolenic acid (g/100 g food) = linolenic acid (% of total acids)/100*fat content*fat factor
Food classification code A 5-digit numeric code assigned to each food and dietary supplement consumed during the AHS. The code is used to group foods and dietary supplements for reporting intakes from the AHS. The first 2 digits represent the major food group. When the 2-digit food group is read with the third digit, the group is referred to as the sub-major food group. When the first five digits are read together, it represents the 'minor' food groups.
Food Model Booklet A visual aid used by the respondents during the AHS to capture the amount of each food and beverage eaten using common household items such as cups, glasses, bowls, plates and containers. Each item has a defined volume. A density is used to convert the volume of the food or beverage identified into a gram amount eaten.  
Food Specific Portion The term used to describe the reported measure for foods and beverages typically sold in a set portion. For example, a slice of bread, an apple, a packet of potato crisps, a bar of chocolate or a takeaway coffee cup.
Food identification code A unique 8-character alpha-numeric identification code assigned by FSANZ data management system. Typically based on the identification system initiated in the series Composition of Foods, Australia (COFA). The code consists of a 4-character food group code followed by a 4-digit number.
Key Foods Program The Key Foods Program was developed using the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) key foods concept. The aim of this approach is to prioritise the selection of foods for nutrient analysis based on their contribution to population nutrient intakes.

FSANZ has done two key foods programs. The first was conducted in 2006 and looked at foods that were major contributors to the nutrient intakes of Australian children. The second was conducted in 2008 and looked at foods that were major contributors to the nutrient intake of Australian adults.

By focussing nutrient analysis on foods that are major contributors to a wide range of nutrient intakes, the quality of the underlying data used to generate survey databases, such as AUSNUT 2011–13, is greatly improved.
Limit of reporting (LOR) The lowest concentration level at which the laboratory reports analytical results. The limit of reporting will vary between nutrients and different types of food.
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2012–13 (NATSINPAS) The 2012–13 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey (NATSINPAS) is one component of the AHS. The survey was conducted between April 2012 and July 2013. It collected information on what people eat and how much exercise they do in addition to general information on demographics, medical conditions and lifestyle behaviours. Approximately 3,000 people were interviewed as part of the survey. Read more
National Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2011–12 (NNPAS) The 2011–12 National Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey (NNPAS) is one component of the AHS. The survey was conducted between 29 May 2011 and 9 June 2012. It collected information on what people eat and how much exercise they do in addition to general information on demographics, medical conditions and lifestyle behaviours. 12,153 people were interviewed as part of the survey. Read more
National Nutrition Survey, 1995 (NNS) The 1995 National Nutrition Survey (NNS) was conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics between 1995 and 1996. The survey collected information on demographics, food intake (including 24-hour recall data and food frequency questionnaire data), food-related habits and attitudes and physical measurements for 13,858 Australian's aged two years or more. A second day's 24-hour recall record was collected for 10% of respondents.

The data collected from the survey was used to help implement Australia's Food and Nutrition Policy, and to guide revisions of the Recommended Dietary Intakes and national health goals and targets.
Nitrogen factor A nitrogen factor is used to calculate protein content from the analysed nitrogen content. The factor used depends on the protein source.

For example:

Protein (g/100 g food) = nitrogen (g/100 g food) x nitrogen factor
Nutrition Information Panel (NIP) A nutrient information panel (NIP) provides information on the average nutrient content of the seven mandatory nutrients (energy, protein, fat, saturated fat, total carbohydrate, total sugar and sodium) that must be declared on a food label in Australia. The NIP also provides information on the product serve size.
Nutrient profile This is the term used to describe the collection of all the nutrient values reported for a specific food, beverage or dietary supplement in AUSNUT 2011–13.
NUTTAB 2010 NUTTAB 2010 is a reference database developed by Food Standards Australia New Zealand that contains primarily analytical nutrient data for 2,668 foods in Australia. 
Respondent A person who participated in the 2011–13 Australian Health Survey.
Retention factor Retention factors are applied to foods and beverages used as ingredients in a recipe to take into account the effect of processing factors such as light, heat, oxidants and leaching on the levels of nutrients in foods. These factors are particularly relevant for alcohol, minerals and vitamins. Retention factors will vary depending on the food and beverage in question and on the method of processing.
Specific gravity Specific gravity is the ratio of the density (mass of a unit volume) of a substance to the density (mass of the same unit volume) of a reference substance. In most of the cases the reference substance is water for liquids or air for gases. Specific gravity represents a ratio and is therefore dimensionless.
Sum of proximates Refers to the sum of the major macronutrient components (water, protein, fat, total carbohydrate, fibre, ash and organic acids) in a food or beverage, which by convention, should generally add to between 97 – 103 g/100 g. It is used to validate the quality of the nutrient profile. Because ash and organic acids are not being reported in the AHS, a range of 95 – 103 g/100 g was considered acceptable for AUSNUT 2011–13. There were a relatively small number of foods with lower sums than this. These were generally high starch or high fibre foods, the analysis of which presents particular challenges, or foods with very high ash contents from the presence of high salt levels (e.g. soy sauce).
Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) is Australia's regulatory body for therapeutic goods including medicines, medical devices, human blood, blood products and tissues.
United States National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a program of studies designed to assess the health and nutritional status of adults and children in the United States. The survey combines interviews and physical examinations.

The interview includes demographic, socioeconomic, dietary, and health-related questions. The examination component consists of medical, dental, and physiological measurements, as well as laboratory tests administered by highly trained medical personnel.
United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) PIPS measures database The USDA Post Interview Processing System (PIPS) measures database contains measures information for the foods and beverages reported as part of the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES).
United States Standard Reference Database The US Standard Reference Database is the major source of food composition in the United States. It contains primarily analytical data for over 8,000 foods. Read more
Weight change factor The weight change factor accounts for how much moisture a food will lose or gain during cooking. Most foods will lose moisture as a result of cooking, and the amount of loss will vary according to the cooking method. A smaller number of foods, such as dry pasta and rice, will gain moisture during cooking.

Print

Return to top