The FDA published new requirements for the Nutrition Facts Table (or NFT) on packaged foods in 2016. This revision reflects new scientific evidence linking diet and chronic diseases such as obesity and heart disease. This updated NFT can be found on most of the food packaging and allows consumers to make better, more informed food choices.
Even though the new NFT requirements were released in 2016, the FDA had rolling compliance dates for the NFTs, which are as follows:
- Manufacturers with annual sales of $10 million or more were required to update their labels by January 1, 2020.
- Manufacturers with annual food sales of less than $10 million were required to update their labels by January 1, 2021.
- Manufacturers of most single-ingredient sugars, such as honey and maple syrup, as well as certain cranberry products, have until July 1, 2021, to comply.
While these compliance dates remain, the FDA has stated that it is willing to work with manufacturers to meet these label requirements.
What are the Seven New Nutrition Facts Table Changes?
The Nutrition Facts Table has undergone seven changes while retaining its “iconic” appearance. The modifications provide more information to consumers and make information more visible by increasing its size and location.
Among the modifications are:
- Servings: “To ensure consumers have access to the information they need to make informed decisions about the foods they eat,” type sizes have been updated, becoming larger and bolder. ” Furthermore, Serving Size changes “must be based on amounts of foods and beverages that people are actually eating, not what they should be eating”. The FDA uses ice cream as an example; previously, the recommended serving size for ice cream was 1/2 cup or 12 ounces. This serving size has been reduced to 2/3 cup (8 ounces). This change will be reflected in the label updates. Manufacturers must provide “dual column” labels for certain products that can be consumed in one or more sittings to indicate the number of calories and nutrients for both “per serving” and “per package/per unit” basis. The dual-column label will more easily help consumers understand the caloric and nutritional intake of the whole unit.
- Calories: The font size with the same goal as the servings section, to give consumers better access to information.
- Daily Values: This section of the label has “been updated based on newer scientific evidence from the Institute of Medicine and other reports,” according to the label. Manufacturers must declare the amount of vitamin D, calcium, iron, and potassium as well as the percent Daily Value. Manufacturers can voluntarily declare the gramme amount for other vitamins and minerals.
- Added Sugars: New subsection of Total Sugars: Added Sugars must be included on the label. Single-ingredient sugars have different labeling requirements.
- Nutrients Required: This section has been updated to include the required amounts of vitamin D and potassium. Calcium and iron are still required on the label, but vitamins A and C are not.
- Amounts Declared: Updated to reflect the latest science.
- New Footnote: The footnote at the bottom of the label now better explains what percent Daily Value means.
How Quality Smart Solutions can help
Firstly, QSS can help with formula review, product labeling, and nutrition facts creation (for Canada and the USA).
Secondly, we can also help with registering supplemented foods with TMALs (Temporary Market Authorization License) or reviewing when the new Supplemented Food Regulations are published.
Thirdly, we help with Safe Foods for Canadians Regulations (HACCP, PCP, Import Licensing, and GRAS Notifications).
Help with facility registration, FSVP agent, and US Agent. Unlock your FSVP Certification with these 7 steps.