If you haven’t already noticed, surely on your next grocery run you’ll spot a few of the differences that were made to the Nutrition Facts Label in 2020. As of last year, the Food and Drug Administration issued a new set of regulations that changed what information was provided on the Nutrition Facts label. The changes were made to better reflect new findings that indicated what truly makes up a healthy diet, and can be seen on all packaged foods imported and made in the U.S. A number of the changes are detailed below.
First and foremost, the calorie count per serving is now the most prominent bit of information on the label. It includes the largest size font and is the first stat represented on the label. Additionally, below this value, you’ll find an updated serving size that more accurately reflects the amount of food the typical individual is consuming with this product. A particularly notable example comes from a twenty-ounce bottle of soda. Previously the whole bottle was considered to be one serving, but now a twelve-ounce can is considered a single serving while the bottle is considered to be two and a half servings.
Another subcategory of the calories section has been changed as well. Calories from Fat has been removed as of these most recent updates. This was in part due to the FDA deciding that the more important information for consumers to be shown are the types of fat that they’re consuming per serving. The new label now displays the total grams of saturated and trans fats. In addition to this, certain nutrients have received their own section as well. Vitamin D, potassium, and others have been added as a majority of Americans don’t consume the recommended quantities of these nutrients every day.
The most notable change from this suite of changes, however, is the inclusion of the total percentage of calories from sugars. This information, now also coupled with the amount of added sugars per serving of any food product, allows consumers to understand how much sugar has been added to their products within the processing or packaging stages. Knowing this information allows individuals to stray away from products that have high amounts of added sugar, as you shouldn’t be consuming any more than 10% of your daily caloric intake from these sugars.
In conclusion, this newly redesigned label creates an easier shopping experience for consumers unsure about what food choices they should be making in order to maintain a healthy diet. For more information on how the label has changed over last year, take a look at the infographic featured below.
Author bio: John Hinchey is VP of Sales for Westfalia Technologies, Inc., a leading provider of logistics solutions for plants, warehouses, and distribution centers. He has more than 20 years of experience in manufacturing and warehouse automation.