The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is seeking public comment on a
study examining labeling claims on whole-grain products. Titled “Experimental
Study on Consumer Responses to Whole Grain Labeling Statements
on Food Packages,” the study is part of the agency’s “continuing effort to
enable consumers to make informed dietary choices and construct healthful
diets,” according to FDA.

The study will examine (i) “consumer judgments about a food product
including its nutritional attributes, overall healthiness, and health benefits”;
(ii) “consumer judgments about a label in terms of its credibility in conveying
the product’s nutritional attributes and its helpfulness in making product
purchasing decisions”; (iii) “consumer perceptions about differences between
different statements, such as ‘Made with Whole Grain,’ ‘Contains Whole Grain,’
and ‘Whole Grain”; (iv) “consumer extrapolation of whole grain statements
beyond the scope of the statements themselves (i.e. halo effects)”; and (v)
“how whole grain statements influence consumer use of the Nutrition Facts.”
FDA requests comments by July 25, 2011. See Federal Register, May 26, 2011.

Meanwhile, FDA has announced that the Office of Management and Budget
has approved two collections of information involving the food sector. Approval
for “Color Additive Certification Requests and Recordkeeping” expires on
April 30, 2014. Approval expires on April 30, 2013, for “Experimental Study of
Nutrition Facts Label Formats.” See Federal Register, May 25, 2011.

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.