The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced revisions
to the Nutrition Facts label designed to emphasize “the link between diet
and chronic diseases such as obesity and heart disease.” In addition to
highlighting calories, servings per container and serving-size declarations
through a combination of increased type size and boldface, the new labels
will (i) require “added sugars” in grams and as a percent daily value, (ii)
require Vitamin D and potassium values, and (iii) make Vitamins A and
C optional.

Citing scientific research, FDA has updated several daily values and
eliminated “Calories from Fat,” but increased mandatory serving sizes
to better reflect food consumption data. Food packages containing
one to two servings that are typically consumed in one sitting must list
calories and nutritional information for the entire packaged portion.
Manufacturers must also use dual-column labels for 24-ounce sodas, ice
cream pints and other foods and beverages that may be consumed in one
or over multiple sittings.

“By law, serving sizes must be based on amounts of foods and beverages
that people are actually eating, not what they should be eating,” states
FDA, which directs food manufacturers with more than $10 million
in annual sales to implement the new labels by July 28, 2018. “How
much people eat and drink has changed since the previous serving size
requirements were published in 1993. For example, the reference amount
used to set a serving of ice cream was previously ½ cup but is changing
to ⅔ cup. The reference amount used to set a serving of soda is changing
from 8 ounces to 12 ounces.” See FDA Press Release, May 20, 2016.


Issue 605

About The Author

For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.