As of May 20, 2016, the FDA has implemented a new Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods. This will include new scientific information, in conjunction with the link between diet and chronic diseases, including heart disease and obesity. This new label will make it effortless for consumers to make healthier food choices.
Highlights of the Final Nutrition Information Label
1. Features of the reinvented design;
The classic look of the label remains unchanged, however, the FDA will be updating important information to ensure consumers have adequate information needed to make good food choices. The changes will consist of increasing the type size for “calories”, and “servings per package or container.” In addition, the number of calories and serving size will be in bold lettering, so consumers can take note of the size and caloric intake at a glance.
The packaging design must now reveal the actual amount, along with the percent Daily Value of vitamin D, calcium, potassium, and iron. Gram amounts for additional vitamins will remain voluntary.
2. Includes Updated Nutrition Science Information
“Added sugars” will now be provided in grams and as percent of the Daily Value, and will be illustrated on the label design. Concerns are that it is difficult to reach nutritional needs while maintaining appropriate calorie limits, if you exceed 10 percent of the total daily calories from added sugar. The food package design may continue to include vitamins A and C on a volunteer basis. There will be a continuation of “total fat”, “saturated fat” and “trans fat” required on the label, however the removal of calories from fat is being implemented, as research has indicated, the type of fat is where the importance prevails.
Daily values to certain nutrients will be updated based on current scientific studies from the institute of medicine and additional reports, such as the dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee Report from 2015. Daily values on the food and beverage label design will represent the amount of nutrients not to be exceeded, and are used to calculate the daily value percentages.
It is anticipated that the % daily value included on the label designs will aid consumers in understanding nutritional information and guidelines, thus making better informed choices.