Causes and Consequences of the FDA New Labelling Rules
The FDA proposes that the food industry has much more information on its food labelling. That this labelling is clearer and easier for customers to understand in order to make informed healthier dietary choices. This change has come about due to the fact that many Americans have become obese. This obesity is leading to a ticking healthcare time bomb, where huge numbers of Americans could become statistics for dietary-related diseases such as heart disease and diabetes.
Due to these worrying statistics, the FDA has approved a firm approach and set out plans for what they believe will help turn the tide on obesity and all its health-related issues.
• The format of the substance and nutrition facts box is set for change. The FDA would like calories per serving to be far more prominent.
• Food labels will have a daily value listing for each nutrient to the left side of the nutrition facts box. It will be mandatory to declare potassium, vitamin D and added sugars but not those of fats and vitamins A and C.
• The FDA is proposing significant changes to the RACCs on food labelling. This will mean that RACCs for foodstuffs such as coffee, tea and frozen desserts, seafood and sugars etc… will increase but those for certain candies and cakes will reduce. This means that serving sizes will no doubt change as the RACCs are currently based on serving sizes from the 1970s when our diets were quite different.
The FDA wants to ensure that serving size is based on the size of a serving that people actually eat and not what they should eat. What this means is that because people tend to buy say a can of soda and drink all of it, an entire can will count as one serving rather than two. It also takes into consideration that most of us eat more than the recommended portion size of foods like ice cream and desserts.
The labelling of calories per fat content will disappear, instead, it will be labelled as calories per serving, making it easier for customers to understand how many calories they are consuming from the products they buy.
The consequences of these changes taking effect will be that businesses will need to change their current label formats at great expense.
It is hoped that the new rules will encourage people to understand their calorific intake and plan for a healthier diet and lifestyle.