Posted March 3, 2014
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently proposed rules to update the Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods, according to an FDA press release, available here. An example of the proposed label is available here.
“For 20 years consumers have come to rely on the iconic nutrition label to help them make healthier food choices,” said FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D. “To remain relevant, the FDA’s newly proposed Nutrition Facts label incorporates the latest in nutrition science as more has been learned about the connection between what we eat and the development of serious chronic diseases impacting millions of Americans.”
The two proposed rules are, “Food Labeling: Revision of the Nutrition and Supplement Facts Labels” and “Food Labeling: Serving Sizes of Foods That Can Reasonably Be Consumed at One-Eating Occasion; Dual-Column Labeling; Updating, Modifying, and Establishing Certain Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed; Serving Size for Breath Mints; and Technical Amendments.” The comment period for both proposed rules ends on June 2, 2014.
Some changes include: requiring information about the amount of “added sugars;” updating the serving size to reflect the amounts people currently eat and drink; dual column labels to indicate both “per serving” and “per package” calorie and nutrition information; requiring potassium and vitamin D to be listed; revising Daily Values for nutrients such as sodium, dietary fiber, and vitamin D; removing “Calories from Fat” from the label; and emphasizing calories, serving sizes and Percent Daily Value.
The American Heart Association and the Center for Science in the Public Interest applauded FDA’s changes, but also said they would suggest additional changes, according to a CNN article available here. Both organizations said FDA’s sodium recommendation was too high and CSPI said it will request that the “FDA include a daily value of 25 grams for added sugars.”
For more information on food labeling, please visit the National Agricultural Law Center’s website here.