Food labeling has first update in more than two decades
The American diet has changed a lot since the Nutrition Facts label made its debut in 1993. People are eating larger serving sizes, and rates of obesity, heart disease and stroke remain high. We also know more about the relationship between nutrients and the risk of chronic diseases.
So the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposes updating the familiar rectangular box.
“Obesity, heart disease and other chronic diseases are leading public health problems,” says Michael Landa, director of FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. “The proposed new label is intended to bring attention to calories and serving sizes, which are important in addressing these problems. Further, we are now proposing to require the listing of added sugars. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends reducing calories from added sugars and solid fats.”
The goal of the changes to the Nutrition Facts label is not to tell people what they should be eating, but to expand the information they need most when making food choices. Don’t expect to see the changes right away, though. Approvals for the new rules could take a year.