But which scheme can best facilitate these ‘at-a-glance’ judgments is hotly debated.
Facts up Front industry scheme
The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) – which is rolling out the ‘Facts up Front’ labeling scheme - says consumers prefer ‘fact-based’ to ‘interpretive’ approaches, and don’t want the “government [to] tell them what they should and should not eat”.
Facts up Front (Nutrition Keys) labels therefore focus on the facts, highlighting calories, saturated fat, sodium and sugar per serving and giving firms the option of highlighting two ‘nutrients to encourage’.
But the Institute of Medicine (IOM) says simply presenting busy shoppers with detailed nutritional facts and figures will not help them make ‘at-a-glance’ judgments in store and proposes a “fundamental shift” towards a system that spells out which products are healthier by ranking them via a new points-based system.
More consumer-friendly FOP labels, says the IOM, should include calories per serving – more prominently-displayed – and a rating of zero to three ‘nutritional points’ for saturated and trans fats, sodium, and added sugars.
But what do you think? Are the facts enough or do consumers need more guidance?
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Click here to find out more about the IOM's proposed front-of-pack labeling scheme.
Click here to find out more about the food industry-backed Facts up Front scheme.
Click here to read more about FOP labeling on Foodnavigator-USA.com