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Changes to the NFP - Is My Label Still FDA Compliant?

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Is My Label Still FDA Compliant?

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In the summer of 2016, the food and Drug administration released its final rules on the new Nutrition Facts label for foods & Beverage packaging to reflect new scientific research, including the link between diet and chronic diseases.

 

The purpose of this new informative label was to better educate the consumer on what is in their food, ultimately affecting their choices of food & beverage products.

 

The existing label has received no changes and has been in use for over 20 years, to ensure consumers have access to more recent and accurate nutrition information about the foods they are eating, The FDA is enacting changes based on updated scientific information, new nutrition and public health research, more recent dietary recommendations from expert groups, and public input.

 

As for the official date of the regulation, the act itself states that: “Manufacturers with $10 million or more in annual sales must switch to the new label by January 1, 2020; manufacturers with less than $10 million in annual food sales have until January 1, 2021 to comply.”

 

This means that ALL importers, manufacturers, and brand owners must already have an updated NFP, or face detentions or product recalls.

 

Every label review we undertake is in line with the 2020 regulations goal, meaning that one label review now and you are fully compliant for 2020 and beyond.

 

The FDA works cooperatively with manufacturers to meet the new Nutrition Facts label requirements. Manufacturers of most single-ingredient sugars such as honey and maple syrup and certain dried fruit are not required to use the updated NFP.

 

Featuring a renewed design, the iconic label looks similar, but there are significant changes under the surface.

The overall look of the label remains largely unchanged, however, the FDA made important updates to ensure consumers can easily understand the information on all food and beverage packaging they need to make informed decisions about what they consume.

 

The main design changes include increasing the font size for “Calories,” “servings per container,” and the “Serving size” declaration, as well as Including bold text for the number of calories and the “Serving size” declaration.

 

Food & Beverage manufacturers are now required declare the actual amount, as well as percent Daily Value of vitamin D, calcium, iron and potassium. There is also the voluntary option to declare any additional vitamins or minerals.

 

The footnote changed help consumers better understand what percent Daily Value means. It now reads: “*The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.”

 

The FDA also took great consideration into increasing the health of the American consumers, Reflecting updated information on nutrition Science and Government guidelines for population health. In light of new scientific evidence and research the following changes were made:

 

“Added sugars,” are now displayed in grams and as percent Daily Value and are now required to be included on the label. Scientific data shows that 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 sugar, and this is consistent with the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

 

The list of nutrients that are required or permitted to be declared on labelling is being updated. Vitamin D and potassium will be required on the label. Calcium and iron will continue to be required.

 

Vitamins A and C will no longer be required but can be included on a voluntary basis.

 

Whilst still requiring “Total Fat,” “Saturated Fat,” and “Trans Fat” on the label, “Calories from Fat” is being removed because nutritional science discoveries indicate that the type of fat is more important than the amount.

 

Daily values percentages for nutrients like sodium, dietary fibre and vitamin D are being updated based on newer scientific evidence from the Institute of Medicine and other reports such as the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee Report, which was used in developing 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 percent Daily Value (% DV) that manufacturers include on the label. The %DV helps consumers understand the nutrition information in the context of a total daily diet.

 

Updates Serving Sizes and Labelling Requirements for Certain Package Sizes.

By law, serving sizes must be based on amounts of foods and beverages that people are eating, not what they should be eating.

 

The amount that people eat, and drink has changed since the previous serving size requirements were published in the 1990’s.

 

For example, the reference amount used to set a serving of ice cream was previously 1/2 cup but is changing to 2/3 cup. The reference amount used to set a serving of soda is changing from 8 ounces to 12 ounces.

 

Package size affects what people eat.

Regulations also changed for packages that are between one and two servings, such as a 20-ounce soda or a 15-ounce can of soup, the calories and other nutrients will be required to be labelled as one serving because people typically consume it in one sitting.

 

For certain products that are larger than a single serving but that could be consumed in one sitting or multiple sittings, manufacturers will have to provide “dual column” labels to indicate the amount of calories and nutrients on both a “per serving” and “per package” basis. Examples would be a 24-ounce bottle of soda or a pint of ice cream.

 

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, again helping consumers to understand what they are consuming without misleading them.

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