In May of 2016, the FDA announced the new Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods. The purpose of the new label is to make it easier for consumers to make better informed food and beverage choices.
During a recent keynote address at the National Food Policy Conference in Washington, D.C., Scott Gottlieb, the Drug Administration Commissioner, stated regulations dealing with consumer information — as well as labeling, ingredient and standard of identification initiatives — are at the center of a new nutrition innovation strategy.
Changes to the labeling, like adopting the new label format, provides consumers with better resources to make informed decisions about their nutrition, and is a step forward in improving Americans’ health. Gottlieb supports this strategy by saying, “Clear science-based information is a central pillar to the work we do today at FDA, and it’s also a driving factor to better consumer choices.”
Since the announcement of new label in Q3 2016, we’ve seen consistent growth in the adoption of the new Nutrition Facts panel. According to Label Insight’s database, in Q4 2016, 795 products adopted the Nutrition Facts label. Since then the amount of products implementing the new label has grown exponentially to 29,089 products, over 3000%.
Responding to health conscious consumers' concerns about added sugars
According to a recent Label Insight study, Americans want better-defined and more transparent food labels to help them better understand what's in the products they use and consume.
The survey also found that most (67 percent) Americans will be prioritizing healthy or socially-conscious food purchases in 2018. Their primary point of emphasis is cutting back on sugars, with nearly half of consumers (47 percent) planning to eat less sugar or buy more 'no sugar added' products this year.
The Nutrition Facts label is one of the first places most consumers turn to when looking for information about the food and beverages they purchase. The updates provide consumers with the information they need to make purchasing decisions that better reflect their dietary preferences. One of the most notable changes to the Nutritional Facts is the addition of “Added sugars,” in grams and as a percentage of recommended Daily Value.
According to the FDA, 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. On average, Americans get about 13 percent of their total calories from added sugars, with the major sources being sugar-sweetened beverages and snacks and sweets.
According to Label Insight data, there are 19,657 products with the amount of added sugars listed within the Nutrition Facts. We have found that out of the 319, 349 food products in our database, 29,089 of them have adopted the new label. These numbers show that brands are making a lot of progress even before the compliance dates but there is still a lot of work to be done.
Shopper’s emphasis on prioritizing healthy food purchases, eating less sugar or buying more 'no sugar added' products is answered with a clear depiction of added sugars on the new Nutrition Facts Label. Brands adopting the updated Nutrition Facts Panel prior to the mandatory compliance date are taking a key step in providing shopper with the information they're looking for, therefore gaining consumer trust.
A Roadmap for Success with Transparency
Label Insight can help you develop a strategic roadmap for your transparency initiatives from updates to the new Nutrition Facts Panel to SmartLabel™. To get started on the path to transparency contact us today.
Hungry for more information? Visit FDA.gov to learn more about FDA changes to the Nutrition Facts Labels