History of Food Composition Database

The development of Malaysian Food Composition Database (FCD) has been initiated since 1980 by the Institute for Medical Research (IMR). The first phase of this programme was the provision of FCD table in 1982, followed by the analysis of the essential nutrients for the local foods.

The Malaysian Food Composition Table in Malaysia was published in 1988 and has been revised in 1997. However, the 1997 FCD only covered limited number of food and nutrients (783 foods with 19 nutrients) and the data was manually compiled.

In ASEAN region, Malaysia is a member of ASEANFOODS (ASEAN network of food data systems) which was established in 1986 with the purpose to ensure cooperation between ASEAN countries and regional level through a close relationship with INFOODS (International Network of Food Data System). ASEANFOODS which was established to develop a mechanism in improving the quality, quantity and accessibility of food composition data in ASEAN and international level. Through ASEANFOODS, ASEAN Food Composition Table was published in 2000 which includes combination of food composition data from six ASEAN countries, namely Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Recognising the importance of nutrients in the etiology and prevention of diseases in the country, there is a need to update the Malaysian FCD with the additional nutrients which were not included in the 1997 FCD. Furthermore, the increasing prevalence of diet-related chronic diseases such as diabetes, the information on sugar content in foods are needed to allow reformulation of the product as well as to increase the effectiveness of nutritional advices. The updated Malaysian FCD will provide better quality nutrient data especially for health professionals, scientists in the field of food and nutrition, food industries and those who are involved in carrying out food preparation.

In 2010, FCD has been identified as one of the Nutrition Research Priority Areas in the 10th Malaysia Plan (2011-2015). The major research area includes updating FCD (1997), adding new data to FCD, improving the FCD methodology and the establishment of contaminants databases.

In the National Coordinating Committee on Food & Nutrition (NCCFN) Meeting (No. 2/2012), decision has been made to update the FCD. Thus, the National Technical Committee on Malaysian FCD was established in January 2010 to begin the task. Currently, a total of 26 agencies including Ministry of Health, universities, Department of Chemistry Malaysia, Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI), Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) and Department of Fisheries have involved in this work. Through the Blue Ocean Strategy, all agencies are committed to undertake this task.

The current updated version of Malaysian FCD contains 29 mandatory and 11 optional nutrients that are important to human health. It also includes the addition of 441 raw and processed foods and 668 prepared foods which were not included in the FCD 1997. A list of 29 mandatory and 11 optional nutrients are shown in Table 1.

The updated version of Malaysian FCD is carried out in three phases:

Phase 1: To harmonise and standardise the sampling and method of analysis for all institutions participated in Malaysian FCD (2010 to 2011).
Phase 2: To establish the web based version of Malaysian FCD (MyFCD) (2011-2014).
Phase 3: To conduct continuous nutrient analysis by the participating institutions and to generate the nutrient laboratory analysis online (2011-present).

The first and second phases have been completed while the third phase of the nutrient analysis is still ongoing. Institute for Medical research (IMR), Department of Chemistry Malaysia and Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) are currently analysing the nutrient for raw and processed foods analysis while the universities are analysing prepared foods. IMR is currently the focal point for the sampling of prepared food prior to the analysis conducted by the designated Institution and Universities.

Table 1: List of mandatory and optional nutrient included in Malaysian FCD

29 Mandatory Nutrients

11 Optional Nutrients


  1. Energy
  2. Water
  3. Protein
  4. Fat
  5. Available Carbohydrate, by difference
  6. Total Dietary Fibre, TDF
  7. Ash
  8. Calcium, Ca
  9. Iron, Fe
  10. Magnesium, Mg
  11. Phosphorus, P
  12. Potassium, K
  13. Sodium, Na
  14. Zinc, Zn
  15. Copper, Cu
  16. Selenium, Se
  17. Manganese, Mn
  18. Iodine
  19. Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C)
  20. Thiamin (B1)
  21. Riboflavin (B2)
  22. Niacin (B3)
  23. Folic Acid (B9)
  24. Vitamin A (Retinol)
  25. Carotenoid
  • α-carotene
  • β-carotene
  • Lycopene
  • Lutein
  1. Vitamin D
  2. Vitamin E
  3. Vitamin K
  4. Total sugar
  • Sucrose
  • Glucose
  • Fructose
  • Lactose
  • Maltose


  1. Pantothenic Acid (B5)
  2. Pyridoxine (B6)
  3. Cobalamin (B12)
  4. Choline
  5. Biotin (B7)
  6. Fatty acid, total saturated fat
  • 4:0
  • 6:0
  • 8:0
  • 10:0
  • 12:0
  • 14:0
  • 16:0
  • 18:0
  1. Fatty acids, total  monounsaturated fat
  • 16:1
  • 18:1
  • 20:1
  • 22:1
  1. Fatty acids, total  polyunsaturated fat
  • 18:2
  • 18:3
  • 18:4
  • 20:4
  • 20:5
  1. Trans fatty acids
  2. Cholesterol
  3. Amino Acid:
  • Tryptophan
  • Threonine
  • Isoleucine
  • Leucine
  • Lysine
  • Methionine
  • Phenylalanine
  • Valine
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