There is a lot to know when it comes to food label requirements – and just when you think you have it figured out, something is sure to change. Some major changes in food labeling regulations are hitting the shelves in 2020, and we want to make sure you are prepared.
If your business exceeds $10 million in revenue, you were already required to be compliant with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s new food label regulations as of January 1st, 2020. If your business records revenue less than $10 million, or you are a single supply manufacturer (for items like honey or sugar), you have until January 2021 to make the necessary updates.
2020 Food Labeling Regulations
Perhaps the most obvious update to the new nutrition labels is that calories are highlighted in a larger, bolder font. Additionally, “Added Sugars” have been added as an entirely new category. You’ll also find that there is an updated footnote, with the daily values being based on a 2,000 calorie daily diet.
New nutrition label changes are as follows:
- Serving Size – Serving size and servings per container are larger and more bold for easy reading. The FDA found that there was a discrepancy between the serving size listed on the nutrition label, and the realistic serving size a person was likely to consume.
- Total Fat and Calorie Content – Calories from fat has been completely removed from the nutrition label. According to the FDA, fat type is more important than the calories consumed from fat. Instead, the calorie content is much larger and more bold, and is easily seen at first glance.
- Added Sugars – Added sugars appears as an entirely new category on the updated nutrition labels. Added sugars are any kind of sweetener that doesn’t occur naturally within the product (refined sugar, syrups, fruit juices, honey, etc.) The FDA points out that this information is important, as it is difficult to stay within the daily recommended caloric intake range if more than 10% of the consumer’s diet is made up of added sugars.
- Daily Value Percentages – The new label requires that no daily value percentage of any vitamin or mineral exceeds 100%. Additionally, vitamins C and A have been removed altogether, as vitamin A and C deficiencies are very rare today. Instead, iron and potassium are now required to be listed on the new nutrition labels, since the average American does not consume sufficient amounts of these nutrients.
- Dietary Fiber and Sodium – The daily recommended values for sodium and fiber have been adjusted. The total recommended value for sodium changed from 2,400 mg per day to 2,300 mg per day. In order for a product’s packaging to claim that it is “low sodium,” it must not contain more than 5% of the recommended daily value. Likewise, the daily recommended value for fiber has changed from 25g of fiber per day to 28g per day. Dietary fiber contributes to digestive health, and foods high in fiber tend to be rich in vitamins.
- Footnote – The language in the footnote has been updated to better explain the meaning behind daily value percentages with an emphasis on a 2,000 calorie diet. Previously, the language emphasized caloric consumption based on personal needs.
What Do the New Nutrition Label Requirements Mean for You?
It’s time to review your food and nutrition labels, and make sure they are in compliance with these new requirements. Assuming your business records revenue less than $10 million, you have the rest of this year to get your product’s nutrition labels updated and in compliance.
Need help? Our label engineers are here to make sure your labels meet the new regulations. Contact us today for more information!