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Nutrition Panel Updates

Posted by Scott Langston on Oct 26, 2016

Nutrition Panel Updates

On May 27, 2016, the FDA published the new Nutrition Facts panel requirements for foods.  These changes will affect virtually all packaged foods.  As food manufacturers work to prepare their new labels to meet FDA’s new Nutrition Facts panel deadline on July 26, 2018, they will be turning to IFP and their other ingredient suppliers to provide them with the nutrition information for those ingredients and additives.  IFP has already updated the information for our Specialty Ingredient and PrimeCAP® products such as sodium bicarbonate and maltodextrin, ensuring that our customers will have the information they need to meet FDA’s deadline.

The Nutrition Facts updates were made to reflect new scientific information concerning the link between diet and chronic disease, update serving sizes and servings per container, and to make the information in the panel easier to understand.  The new Nutrition Facts panel looks very similar to the current format, but several changes were made in order to highlight key information for the consumer.  Calories, serving size, and servings per container are more prominent in the new design.  Food manufacturers must include the actual amount of declared nutrients, rather than just the percent Daily Value (%DV).  The footnote has been updated to better explain what percent Daily Value means.  It will now read,

“The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet.  2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.”

 

Several changes have been made to reflect the latest scientific information about nutrition.  FDA will now require that Added Sugars be included in grams and as a %DV.  The list of nutrients that are required or permitted to be listed has been updated, too.  Vitamin D and potassium are now required.  Calcium and iron will still be listed.  Vitamins A and C are no longer required, but may be included voluntarily.  American diets are no longer deficient in Vitamins A and C. Vitamin D is important for bone health, and potassium helps to lower blood pressure.  “Calories from Fat” has been removed, as it has been shown that the type of fat is more important than the amount. The Daily Values for several nutrients, including sodium, dietary fiber, and vitamin D have been updated to reflect the latest scientific findings. 

On the new Nutrition Facts panel, some foods will have their serving sizes updated, based on the amounts Americans typically eat, rather than the amount they should eat. The serving size for ice cream is changing from ½ cup to 2/3 cup.  A serving of soda is changing from 8 ounces to 12 ounces.  The number of servings per package will be changing in some cases.  If a package contains between one and two servings, the nutritional panel must list the values for the entire package contents, as this is the amount typically consumed. For some products that are larger than a single serving, and could be consumed over multiple sittings, the nutritional panel must appear in a dual-column format, listing a single serving and the whole package, because some people may be inclined to consume the entire package.

At IFP, our regulatory team has already updated the nutritional data for our Specialty Ingredient and PrimeCAP® products such as sodium bicarbonate and maltodextrin, so our customers can beat the July 26, 2018 deadlines for their retail labels.

 

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