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FDA is implementing New Nutrition Facts labels

Effort is make consumers more aware of added sugars in products. Aim is to reduce the epidemic of obesity, diabetes and other health problems which may be associated with high sugar intake. Most food manufacturers are to have the labels in use no later than July 26, 2018.
Click on headline for story with photo(s) including side-by-side old and new labels

From the U.S. Food & Drug Administration

(Fri 20 May 2016) - the U.S. Food and Drug Administration took a major step in making sure consumers have updated nutritional information for most packaged foods sold in the United States, that will help people make informed decisions about the foods they eat and feed their families.

The new Nutrition Facts label will include the following:

  • An updated design to highlight "calories" and "servings," two important elements in making informed food choices.

  • Requirements for serving sizes that more closely reflect the amounts of food that people currently eat. What and how much people eat and drink has changed since the last serving size requirements were published in 1993. By law, the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act, requires that serving sizes be based on what people actually eat.

  • Declaration of grams and a percent daily value (%DV) for "added sugars" to help consumers know how much sugar has been added to the product. It is difficult to meet nutrient needs while staying within calorie limits if you consume more than 10 percent of your total daily calories from added sugars, and this is consistent with the scientific evidence supporting the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

  • "Dual column" labels to indicate both "per serving" and "per package" calorie and nutrition information for certain multi-serving food products that could be consumed in one sitting or multiple sittings. Examples include a pint of ice cream and a 3-ounce bag of chips. With dual-column labels available, people will be able to easily understand how many calories and nutrients they are getting if they eat or drink the entire package/unit at one time.

  • For packages that are between one and two servings, such as a 20 ounce soda, the calories and other nutrients will be required to be labeled as one servingbecause people typically consume it in one sitting.

  • Updated daily values for nutrients like sodium, dietary fiber and vitamin D, consistent with Institute of Medicine recommendations and the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Daily values are reference amounts of nutrients to consume or not to exceed and are used to calculate the %DV that manufacturers include on the label.

  • Declaration of Vitamin D and potassium that will include the actual gram amount, in addition to the %DV. These are nutrients that some people are not getting enough of, which puts them at higher risk for chronic disease. The %DV for calcium and iron will continue to be required, along with the actual gram amount. Vitamins A and C will no longer be required because deficiencies of these vitamins are rare, but these nutrients can be included on a voluntary basis.

  • "Calories from Fat" will be removed because research shows the type of fat is more important than the amount. "Total Fat," "Saturated Fat," and "Trans Fat" will continue to be required.

  • An abbreviated footnote to better explain the %DV.
The FDA is also making minor changes to the Supplement Facts label found on dietary supplements to make it consistent with the Nutrition Facts label. Most food manufacturers will be required to use the new label by July 26, 2018. Manufacturers with less than $10 million in annual food sales will have an additional year to comply with the new rules. The FDA plans to conduct outreach and education efforts on the new requirements.

The iconic Nutrition Facts label was introduced more than 20 years ago to help consumers make informed food choices and maintain healthy dietary practices. In March 2014, the FDA proposed two rules to update the label, and in July 2015, issued a supplemental proposed rule. The Nutrition Facts label regulations apply to packaged foods except certain meat, poultry and processed egg products, which are regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service.

FDA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, protects the public health by assuring the safety, effectiveness, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines and other biological products for human use, and medical devices. The agency is also responsible for the safety and security of our nation's food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, products that give off electronic radiation, and for regulating tobacco products.


This story was posted on 2016-05-21 19:56:54
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New Food Labels will make tracking added sugars easier



2016-05-21 - Photo from U.S. Food & Drug Administration.
New Nutrition Facts Labels required by the US Food & Drug Administration will show how much added sugar there is in food - and beverage - products. "Most food manufacturers will be required to use the new label by July 26, 2018," the FDA said in the accompanying announcement.

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