Food, beverage industry announces front-of-pack nutrition labeling initiative

October 29, 2010

America’s leading food and beverage manufacturers and retailers have joined forces in the fight against obesity and announced their commitment to develop a new front-of-package nutrition labeling system. The consumer initiative will make it easier for busy consumers to make informed choices when they shop.

This program will add nutrition information on calories and other nutrients to the front of the packages of many of the country’s most popular food and beverage products. To appeal to busy consumers, the information will be presented in a fact-based, simple, and easy-to-use format. In the coming months, the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) will finalize the details of the initiative, including the technical and design elements. In addition, details will be finalized on how to provide consumers with information on nutrients needed to build a “nutrient-dense” diet and on “shortfall nutrients” that are under-consumed in the diets of most Americans. GMA and FMI will continue to consult stakeholders on these and other details in the coming weeks.

Consumers will begin to see the new label in the marketplace early next year.

“Thanks to this initiative and many other innovative industry programs, consumers will now have access to more information about their food than ever before,” said FMI President and CEO Leslie G. Sarasin. “This unprecedented partnership with manufacturers will expand access to nutrition information for all Americans and give shoppers a powerful tool to assist them in selecting nutritious products.”

To build consumer awareness and promote use of the new label, America’s food and beverage manufacturers and retailers have agreed to support the change to their product labels with a $50 million consumer education campaign. The campaign, to be launched in 2011, will be aimed at parents who are primary household shoppers.

Press release