Front-of-Package Nutrition Labels Are Coming

November 15, 2010
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Next year, food makers and retailers will start applying easier-to-read nutrition labels on the front of their packaging to help consumers fight obesity, says Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius. The products are from some of the biggest U.S. food makers, say two trade groups.

In 2011, it just might get easier to making healthy choices at the supermarket if the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has its way. FDA has been pushing for uniform labels on food and beverage containers in efforts to reduce the nation’s obesity rate. The number of people in the United States who are obese has more than doubled in the past 30 years to 72 million, according to the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People who are overweight or obese have a greater risk of diabetes, heart attacks and strokes.

Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius says that the federal government asked food makers to develop a labeling system that will put nutrient information on the front of packages.

The calorie content and health information would appear on the front of packages in a “fact-based, simple and easy-to-use format,” said the Food Marketing Institute and the Grocery Manufacturers Association in a joint statement announcing the voluntary labeling system.

The new labels will appear early next year, Sebelius says. Full details of the plan, including technical and design elements, are to become final in the coming months. The hope is that the food industry will develop a label that assists in consumer understanding and helps parents and other shoppers easily identify and select products that contribute to a healthy diet, explains an FDA spokesperson. The move could be the biggest change to U.S. food labels in nearly 20 years, says David Mackay, president and CEO of Kellogg Co. in Battle Creek, Mich.

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Front of package nutrition labeling

Karen Grossman
November 17, 2010
The government seems to think people don't heed nutrition facts because they are on the back of the package. Nonsense! Maybe it's just not their priority. Uncle Sam is paving the way for the next step: Taxes on foods high in carbs and/or fat.

Front of Package nutrition labeling

John Schneider
November 17, 2010
Another example of government involvement in a area they don't belong costing more money. The informtion is there already. Like the old saying you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink. Education is the key not where you place the label.

Front of Pack labeling
November 17, 2010
Paul, This should be more redesign business for us. And a great example of being proactive with current/past and new clients. We should write some copy and test via our monthly mailing that Mike does, consider an email blast, and provide Corporate Rain and Launch with this info when they cold call. G



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