Are You Ready? FDA NLEA Updates
On May 27, 2016, the FDA published the final updated NLEA (Nutrition Labeling and Education Act) regulations to the Federal Register. Updated rules were created in response to new scientific information regarding consumer health and dietary lifestyles. The major updates you should know can be summarized into three main changes:
1. Facts Panel Design
The new design of the nutrition facts panel, while very similar to the initial format, contains key differences enabling consumers to make more educated dietary decisions. “Calories” is a larger font size and “Serving Size” is now bolded. The nutrient amounts, in addition to the percent Daily Value (%DV), must now be declared for Vitamin D, Calcium, Iron, and Potassium in the vitamins and minerals section. Further explained in the footnote of the panel is an elaborated description of the intent of %DV.
2. Declared Nutrient Update
The final rule includes an update to the mandatory nutrients shown on full nutrition facts panels. Calories from Fat, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C are no longer mandatory. Instead, Vitamin D, Potassium and Added Sugars are now required. “Added Sugars” is a new term coined for this regulatory update. Dietary Fiber also has a new definition which will affect the quantity of Dietary Fiber declared on the facts panel if the product contains non-beneficial fiber--more guidance from the FDA is coming at a later date. In addition to many unit changes for nutrients, Fluoride and Choline have been added to the list of voluntary nutrients.
3. Serving Size and Servings per Container Update
Numerous RACC (Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed) have been updated to reflect realistic consumer consumption. New RACCs have been created for additional product types. The intent of these updates was to mandate manufacturers to include a dual column label when the serving size for a product is or could be, consumed in one sitting. This provides consumers a more accurate depiction of their nutritional intake from the entire container.
It’s now been almost a year since the FDA NLEA publication. Have you begun the transition? Eurofins has taken steps to ensure our clients a smooth and painless transition. Contact us today to learn more!
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Image source: US Food and Drug Administration