Update, October 2, 2017: After indefinitely extending the July 2018 compliance date to enforce the new and improved nutrition labels, the FDA has finally proposed a deadline. So exactly how much longer must we wait?
On September 29, the FDA announced plans to grant food manufacturers an extra year and a half to start printing the new nutrition labels on packages. This means that big companies, which the agency defines as those that rack up over $10 million in sales annually, will have until January 1, 2020 to implement the changes. Smaller companies are granted a later deadline, January 1, 2021.
So why does the agency wish to enforce the revamped labels into the next decade? Apparently, many food manufacturers claimed that they required more time to implement the changes, which negatively affects us as consumers. The FDA’s “decision to cave in to food industry demands and delay the deadline for companies to update their Nutrition Facts labels harms the public’s health, denies consumers vital information, and creates an unfair and confusing marketplace as many companies have gone ahead with the labels anyway,” Dr. Peter G. Lurie, president of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, said in a statement. Since the proposed rule is open for public comment beginning on October 2, it will allow 30 days for commentary after which it will be finalized.
Original Post, June 13, 2017: The Food and Drug Administration announced on Tuesday that it would be delaying a major upgrade to the nutrition facts panel that was set to take place in 2018.
If nutrition labels aren’t on your minds as much as they are here at Eat This, Not That!, allow us to jog your memory: Back in 2016, the FDA announced it would be implementing a major facelift to the decades-old nutrition fact labels found on the backs of your snack packages. And let us tell you, it was about time. According to the FDA, the nutrition label had not been updated since 1993!
As to the changes, come July 2018, the new label would have displayed calories in a larger font size, reflected updated serving sizes as well as nutrient daily values, and — for the first time in history — declared the amount of added sugars in your products.
It was considered as a major win for those of us who are concerned about cutting out added sugars in our diets, as countless studies have found that a high intake of the sweet stuff in your diet can put you at risk for a host of metabolic disorders from obesity to diabetes as well as increases your risk for heart disease.
Unfortunately, we’re likely going to have to wait a lot longer to see any changes take place. According to an update on their website, the FDA is extending the July 2018 deadline indefinitely so that manufacturers would “be able to complete and print updated nutrition facts panels for their products before they are expected to be in compliance.” The administration claims to “provide details of the extension through a Federal Register Notice at a later time.”
That means you’ll just have to be vigilant about abnormal serving sizes and added sugars lurking in your everyday foods. You can continue to reach your better body goals by avoiding these 30 Foods That Have More Sugar Than a Donut.