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Navigating Nutrition Labels

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Deadlines, delays, and new requirements have impacted every product with a nutrition label. Give your nutrition label a review with Cortney Fransen and Mollie Hammerschmidt of Eurofins Nutrition Analysis Center (ENAC). Also, learn to determine what nutrients your product label must include by 2020/21 and how to identify any additional required disclosures.

How is the NLEA impacting ingredients, producers, distributors and even restaurants? Is your label ready?

Let's start the conversation

Contact us with your questions or testing needs!

 

Begin Transcription: 

Sarah: Alright, good morning everyone. Thank you all so much for tuning in today for our presentation of Navigating Nutrition Labels. I'm here with Cortney and Mollie Hammerschmidt, and before I get started I'd like to go over just a few housekeeping items.


So, before we begin, this webinar is being recorded. A copy of the slides and the video recording will be available online on our website and sent directly to your inbox and the inbox of anyone else who registers today in two business days, so you can expect those slides at least by next Monday.


We will have time for a Q & A following the presentation and today's presentation will be about 30 minutes with about 15 minutes for question and answer. In order to submit questions, we suggest that you use the submit questions panel in your go to webinar dashboard. To submit a question using the dashboard, simply click the arrow to drop down to ask your question box, type in your question, and hit enter. You're also able to submit questions to us over Twitter by tweeting questions to @Eurofins using the hashtag #NutritionLabel.


So, a little bit on Eurofins before we get started. Eurofins is driven by our mission to contribute to global health by offering the highest quality testing, training, auditing and consulting services. We strive to listen to our customers’ needs and not simply meet, but exceed their expectations. Eurofins is a full service provider of food safety and quality services including, but certainly not limited to, microbiology and chemistry testing. We are your one stop shop for both routine and specialized testing, auditing, training, consulting and candid expert advice. And, our footprint is global. With over 400 laboratories across 42 countries, and a portfolio of over 150,000 analytical methods, Eurofins provides a unique range of analytical testing services to the pharmaceutical, food, environment and consumer products industries and to governments.


So, today I am here with Cortney and Mollie Hammerschmidt, like I said, I hope that you can all see them on screen. Both of them are project managers with Eurofins Nutrition Analysis Center and they spend a lot of their time working with our clients on their NLEA questions, nutrition labeling questions and they're here to share their expertise with you today. So, like I said, submit your questions throughout our presentation, raise your hand in the dashboard if you have any concerns throughout the presentation and without further ado ... Can you guys give me a little back ground on the NLEA, just to get us started?


Cortney: Sure, absolutely. So, the NLEA or the nutritional labeling and education act is a set of guidelines that provides the FDA with specific authority to be able to require nutrition labeling on most food that's regulated by the agency. Again, this doesn't apply to every food product and it is only things that are mandated by the FDA. There are, of course, exemptions depending on company size, product types, things like that. However, this is the specific set of guidelines. There is no pre-clearance labeling requirement. What that means is that manufacturers essentially are responsible for ensuring their labels are on their products. If you were to be audited by the FDA, or inspected, you would need to be sure that you could essentially back up your nutrition label and make sure that your product is labeled correctly.


At Eurofins, Mollie and I, we do have project managers that are available to assist with all these inquiries that you may have in regards to your product. You know, does it fall under the FDA labeling guidelines, or do you have any exemptions for your products? Things like that.


Sarah: So, what has driven the FDA to make these changes?


Mollie: So, there have been some updates to the regulations, so initially the FDA proposed that in 2016 in anticipation that it would go into effect 2018, 2019, they actually extended this in September to be compliant in 2020, which basically means it gives companies more time to comply with the regulations as well as it gives the FDA more time to kind of evaluate the percent daily values and the regulations that they're putting in place. It's been made very clear that their focus is to kind of help companies and consumers understand what they're actually eating and putting into their bodies as well as they took heavily into the account the recommendations of scientific institutes.


Sarah: So, on packages, what do these changes look like?


Cortney: Sure. So, as Mollie mentioned, many of the changes were based on scientific research and dietary changes that have been noticed in the industry, so it was really focusing on informing the consumer and making these more ... Basically just more understandable for the customer. So, the first thing that we'll start with is serving size and this is something that we'll delve into a little bit more later as well, but there's a lot of focus on customers understanding what a serving size is and that maybe, you know, when you buy either a bottle of soda or a package or something like that, it might not always be an entire serving. So, the nutrition label and all of the values that you're seeing are based on that serving size, not necessarily based on one package. So, they have made it more prominent on the label. A larger, bolder type and things like that.


Calories is also something that they've enlarged in order to make more prominent on the label. Daily values. So, for the different nutrients that are listed on the nutrition facts panel, each of them has a daily value or how much of that nutrient you should be taking in each day. These were updated; they were updated to be more realistic for what people are intaking, so some of them were lowered, some of them increased, it really just depends, but those were updated.


Added sugars is a hot topic that has been added to the new panel and it is something that was not on the previous format. It's also something that we'll provide a lot more information on later in the webinar, but that is a new addition to the panel.


Previously, vitamins and minerals were only declared in that percent daily value that I mentioned before. However, now they have been updated so that they're declared in actual amounts and their percent daily value.
And then the footnote at the bottom of the panel is also updated. Again, this is to inform consumers what the daily value stands for as well as that the value listed on the panel are based off of a 2,000 calorie diet.


Sarah: Alright. So, before we move on to what's in and what's out, I think it would be a great time to ask a question of our audience, so I'm going to launch a poll really quickly. Has your business already made the switch to modern FDA labeling requirements? I'll give everyone about a minute to answer. And I see over the chat, it sounds like everyone is doing fine on sound, thanks for your feedback, we really like to hear that you enjoy seeing our faces. We're actually all in the same room, just sitting across the table from each other, but we thought that it would be a nice change for you to be able to see who you guys are talking to on the phone every day. So, just a couple more seconds. It looks like about 70% of the audience has voted.


Alright, going to close the poll and I won't display the results on screen today in the interest of time, but it looks like about 40% of you have already switched to the updated nutrition label, but 37% percent of you said you have not yet made the change. About a quarter say it doesn't apply. So, that's pretty interesting that it's a 50/50 split almost in who has and who hasn't.


And, with that, can you guys explain to us what made the cut and what's moving out?


Mollie: Yeah, so I actually find those results really interesting. Based on the new regulations, there's been specifically like some nutrient changes that are removed from the current label as well as nutrients that have been added, so now there's potassium and vitamin D in the new label. The old label has vitamin A and vitamin C and that decision from the FDA was basically made on the premise that most people now voluntarily consume more vitamin A and vitamin C than they do D and potassium. There's more of a deficiency now in D and potassium, so that's why they are declaring those values now as well as there's some changes in calories and added sugars. The calories they've determined now are the source of them is not necessarily relevant or important and that's based on scientific data that they made that decision as well as Cortney mentioned the dietary fiber and other carbohydrates and then we'll kind of get into the added sugars in a minute here, but basically it's all based on scientific data what these changes in nutrients were.


Sarah: So, we've all heard that serving sizes have been adjusted. How does that change and what will it look like now? Or what will these new panels look like?


Cortney: The next thing we're going to delve into is dietary fiber. So, previously dietary fiber had been defined by an analytical method, so on the labels before, there were AOAC or other methods that were defined by the FDA so that essentially if you were going to get lab analysis to find out the dietary fiber for your product, these were the methods that you could use. That is not so much the case anymore. The FDA has provided an updated definition. I can let you read that, but essentially, their new definition is that isolated or synthetic, non-digestible carbohydrates determined by the FDA to have beneficial physiological effects can now be considered dietary fiber.


So, what this means is that previously fiber found in foods could be labeled as dietary fiber without necessarily providing any physiological effects or how they were beneficial to human health. Naturally occurring fiber contained in foods have already been determined to have this physiological beneficial effect, so there are currently, which we have up on the screen right now, there are currently seven fibers that have been approved to be beneficial or have physiological effects on the body that can now be considered dietary fibers. There are 26 others that are under FDA review to be determined as beneficial or non-beneficial, so this is still something that's being reviewed by the FDA.


Mollie and I attended a conference last week and it was one of the most hot topics that was talked about. We actually had a chance to talk with some personnel from the FDA and really what's being said right now is that it's still just kind of up in the air and I know that doesn't really appease anybody or isn't what people want to hear, but it's still something that's being approved by the FDA, it's still under consideration, so as of right now dietary fiber is kind of a gray area. However, the final rule is being reviewed and they hope to be able to provide more definitely answers as to what can be considered an approved dietary fiber and included on the label.


So, existing dietary fiber methods cannot distinguish the source of the fibers, so as I was saying, there are different fibers that are currently under review, so we do have different methods that can quantify different levels of dietary fibers, however, it essentially is up to the manufacturer to record keep and know what type of fibers are going into your products and as the FDA comes out with more information and gives us those additional fibers that are either deemed beneficial or non-beneficial, that's what will be decided and can go on the nutrition facts.


And also, there are lists so we have a graphic here that kind of shows the difference between the old regulations and the new regulations, so, say if you had a product previously that contained oats and inulin, which would be considered soluble fiber as well as cellulose, all of those would have been considered dietary fiber on the old panel, so you would have had a total of 15 grams of total dietary fiber on your panel. With the updated regulations the oats and the cellulose are currently approved, so those are things that would be considered dietary fiber, however, inulin is something that is still under review, so at this time it would not be considered a beneficial fiber and would not be part of your dietary fiber value. So, the inulin would still contribute to the total carbohydrates as dietary fiber, it's currently a subgroup of carbohydrates, the inulin value would still contribute to the total carbohydrate value, but could not at this time be considered a dietary fiber, so with the new regulations, your product that had 15 grams of dietary fiber under the old regulations, now is considered to only contain 10 grams of dietary fiber.


So, as I mentioned, it's really just something that's kind of ongoing and the FDA is reviewing, but there is a large difference in the dietary fiber values from the old to the new regulations. It's something that we talk about every day, so if there are further questions, we're happy to delve into the topic with you.


Sarah: You guys will have the update here first when they figure it out. So, what about sugars? That's been a big change.


Mollie: Yeah, added sugars is a big change. There will now be on the label, instead of total, there will be kind of a subcategory that says added sugars. There is a lot of evidence to support that your calorie intake is directly related to the amount of added sugar that you eat and the FDA has determined that it's difficult to stay within the caloric intake that you're supposed to have if you're consuming more added sugars.

Basically, if you're consuming more in excess, it's a lot tougher to meet your dietary fiber needs, your vitamin needs, your mineral needs. You can see the definition up there. Basically, added sugars are going to be anything to your product that's added in processing, so like honey, syrup, anything that's not naturally occurring. So, they kind of just, this goes along with the education component, they want the consumer to be more aware of what they're actually consuming. It's not necessarily that the sugars are bad for you. The FDA has explicitly stated that it's just that it directly relates to your caloric intake.


Sarah: And, what about vitamins?


Cortney: Sure. So, the vitamins as far as intake goes, there hasn't really been much change as far as daily values. There was some slight changes to those type of things, but really what's changing on the new panel from what we've seen in the past is the way that the vitamins are reported as far as the unit changes goes. So, previously vitamin D for instance, was reported in international units or IUs and this is now something that's going to be reported as micrograms. Vitamin A also is something that the unit is changing and will now be reported as micrograms of RAE, which is retinol activity equivalent. And then there's also another level to vitamin A in that there is a difference between supplemental versus dietary. So, this is something that an analytical method can not distinguish and it really comes down to record keeping from the manufacturer, so this is something that as a manufacturer you would want to know essentially the source of your vitamin A and where it's coming from so that that can be differentiated on the label.


Vitamin E is now reported as milligrams of tocopherol, so essentially of the tocopherols in vitamin E, it was decided that alpha tocopherol is what's going to be reported exclusively on the label.
Folates and folic acids are now reported as dietary folate equivalents. Again, there is no analytical method that can distinguish between folate and folic acid, so it isn't a test for total folate and then there's a conversion that's done to get to the dietary folate equivalent. Again, this kind of comes down to record keeping as you need to know the source and where this is coming from in your product.


And then Niacin, as well, is something that the unit is changing and it's now going to be reported as milligrams of niacin equivalent. Something that's a little different about this is that is actually takes the tryptophan value into account and there's some high level science behind this that we can delve into a little bit deeper if needed, but essentially the tryptophan value is just now something that's taken into account, so if you are going to be getting lab analysis, sending your sample to Eurofins, we will want to make sure that we're testing for tryptophan in order to report the niacin on the label.


And just something else to note here is that vitamin D of these five that we have listed, vitamin D is the only mandatory nutrient, so that's really the one that we're going to be focusing on, but these other vitamins that are listed are of course things that can be listed voluntarily on your labels, so if they are something that you have in your product, those are going to be the changes for those vitamins.


Mollie: Kind of something that I touched on, well, didn't really touch on, but Cortney mentioned is that sugars also you can't distinguish between naturally occurring and synthetic, so you want to make sure that you have good record keeping as far as what's being added to your product because there is no known method to distinguish between that naturally and synthetic occurring sugars.


Sarah: So, lots of record keeping.


Mollie: Yes.


Sarah: So, really I got a little bit ahead of myself, but now can you explain [Inaudible]


Mollie: That's fine. So, basically, by law it is required that we label products according to what is typically consumed, rather than what should be consumed for serving sizes. So the FDA kind of took that into consideration when making these new regulations, so a lot of what we consume now has changed since 1990. So, that kind of brings us into our next slide where it comes into dual panels. For certain products now, they're going to be required to have dual panels. Typically if you can sit down with a certain item that's two to three servings, it's going to be required to have a dual panel because people can eat it in one sitting. So, basically, it's a new change from what originally occurred if you're eating it in one sitting. An example would be like ice cream, or soda. So that's going to be a new requirement.


Cortney: Yeah, and just to kind of go onto that a little further, it's just really important for consumers I think. I think this is really a great change because previously you would pick up a bottle of soda for instance, that would maybe be 16 ounces and the serving size for a bottle of soda used to be eight ounces, but most people when they're buying that at a convenience store, they're not going to drink half of it and put it back, so I think the panels in the past may have been a little misleading just because the serving sizes weren't as accurate as they are now. So, I think it'll really help consumers kind of give you a better picture of that bottle that you have might not be that actually 220 calories per serving, which we see on the left, it's actually going to be that entire container that you're consuming and it shows you the caloric value for both of them, so I think it's just a really great change that the FDA put in of all these changes.


Mollie: It ties in, too, to the whole consumer education piece of it, is what they're really focusing on.


Cortney: Absolutely.


Sarah: Alright, so before we get into how this is going to impact different segments of the food industry, we'd like to ask our audience what segment you fall into? So, I'm going to launch another poll really quickly, we're also going to do a quick audio and internet check. We're hearing from a few people that the audio is not working great. If your audio isn't working very well, we suggest that you call in using a telephone rather than trying your computer audio, but I'll have Cortney check her internet connection and I'll check mine as well.


So, we'll give everyone about a minute to answer this question, but the poll question is what segment of the food industry would you say your business is a part of? Restaurants, food service, ingredients, raw ingredients, finished foods, retail, or other?


And if you're selecting other, I'd love to hear in the comments, too, what industry or segment you fall under. Especially, we're going to touch on supplements I think a little bit and I know this is all impacting every segment of our industry. So, let us know in the comments. It looks like we have some alcoholic beverages, dietary supplements, more dietary supplements. This is great. We love learning about our audience.


Alright, I am going to close the poll. So, overwhelmingly our audience is falling under the finished foods and retail sector. A lot in other and then about 20% in ingredients, so since we have so many people in the dietary supplements in the comments, what can you tell us about how NLEA is going to impact that?


Mollie: So, basically NLEA is going to impact supplements just like it will nutrition facts panels. The major difference in dietary supplements, I mean it's still going to have the bolded title, the difference is that values that are rounded down to zero per FDA regulation will not be displayed, with the exception of five major categories. So, if you are looking to claim a certain vitamin or mineral and it rounds down to zero, per the FDA, it's not allowed to be displayed on the label. That's the major change, most of the changes that we discussed today are applicable to the supplement facts. That's the largest change. The only other one I can think of that's pretty large is for nutrition facts panels, per the FDA, you cannot claim omega threes, six, nines on the label. You can do that with supplement facts panels.

 

Sarah: Cortney, recently you wrote an article for the Eurofins news room about how NLEA is impacting menu labeling at restaurants. Can you talk about that a little?

 

Cortney: Yeah, so this is also a new update that's coming. It's kind of separate from the nutrition labeling updates, but it is a new update that's effecting the industry. It's actually something that was supposed to go into effect May 5, 2017 and I believe it was on May 4, 2017 the FDA provided an extension of an entire year, so you know there are probably a lot of restaurants that have already made these updates and if you go into a lot of restaurants, you can see caloric values on a lot of these things, but the FDA did give that extension, so these new regulations for menu labeling will go into effect this May, on May 5th of 2018. And, who has to comply with these regulations are any restaurants or similar retail food establishments that are part of a chain of 20 or more locations doing business under the same name. So this is kind of an important part as this applies to franchises, if there are 20 or more retail food establishments that are not doing business under the same name, those do not comply. They don't have to comply with these regulations.

 

And these that do comply, they must be selling restaurant type food, so what that means is whether it would be a grocery store that's going to be selling deli sandwiches or essentially like grab and go products, things like that. So, convenience stores that may be selling donuts, breakfast sandwiches, things like that, those are going to need to comply as well. So, we have a list of a couple types of establishments there that are required and then of course there are the other side, which is exempt from these regulations and that it would be things like food trucks, side walk carts, trains, airplanes, and then of course, any chains that have fewer than 20 locations do not have to comply. However, anyone may voluntarily register to fall under these regulations, so anyone can put this information on their restaurant menu labels.

 

So, what's required for this information? If you're going to pick out the food, the only things that are really required on the actual menu board are going to be the calories, the number of calories that are in the product, along with the statement of calories, essentially explaining that the calories are based off of a 2,000 calorie diet. And then the other information, so there are a number of other nutrients that are required that you have the information, but it doesn't have to be posted on the board, you just need to have a note somewhere in your establishment that says that the additional information can be provided upon request.

 

So, excuse me, the rules are not necessarily concerned with the format or the font or how these are displayed on your menu board, essentially all it says is that calories must be clearly associated with and adjacent to either the name or the picture of the standard menu item. So, you know, this is something that we haven't necessarily seen in the past, but again, it goes along with the FDAs final goal of consumer education and if you're a restaurant or even a drive-thru, drive-thru menu boards must also contain this information. They just want you to be able to see a quick snapshot of that calorie information to help make your decisions when you're ordering.


Sarah: So, to round it out, how can Eurofins help?


Mollie: So, basically we can kind of do a lot for everyone. We are able to perform NLEA testing for both the current and the modern regulations if you so choose, whichever one. We can also, Cortney and I, directly can kind of navigate you to which option might be best for you at this point in time. We're able to also generate labels for you in a variety of formats, so if you're needing a PDF version, a Vector version, something along those lines, we can definitely assist you with that. As well as coordinating the testing between us and the lab we can follow up for you, make sure you are updated on the turnaround times and when you're going to expect your label.


Sarah: Yeah, and we also have another lab that can assist with allergen and non-GMO testing and label claims. Some of the fastest turnaround times and most competitive pricing in the industry, so if that's something that you're looking to add to your label, definitely reach out to us as well. So, really quickly before we get into question and answer, we have a lot of questions queued up here. Please get your questions in right now, but I have one last question for the audience and that is, have you worked with Eurofins in the past to review your nutrition label? Yes, or no? Pretty simple.Lots of good questions coming in. Keep them coming.

 

Cortney: So you mind if i just say one thing quickly while-

 

Sarah: Absolutely.

 

Cortney: Okay, so I just wanted to also say that Eurofins training and consulting, we do have a division that can perform label reviews, so if you have already had your nutrition label completed and you're looking for a basic label review or a consultative label review, we do have a couple different options that can be offered by Eurofins, so it is kind of upon seeing what the different levels are, but I just wanted to throw that out there, too, that we do have that training and consulting division that can provide the service as well.

 

Mollie: Sorry, I skipped over that a little bit.

 

Cortney: No, that's alright.
Sarah: Okay. So, I'm going to close the polling question. Quickly, thanks to everybody that voted. It looks like most of you haven't done nutrition label reviews with us yet, but that just means that hopefully this information has kind of given you the tools that you need to get started on that process. We learned from our first polling question that about 40% of you haven't started your transition to the new label yet, so what does that look like for FDA label review?

 

Cortney: Yeah, there's a few different levels that we can offer. It's not something that our division does, but we'd be happy to get you in contact with the correct people to be able to assist with those type of things.

 

Sarah: Alright. So, early on in the presentation, someone asked what is the deadline? I know it's moved a couple times, we're looking at the 2020s now. Do you guys have an answer?

 

Mollie: Like Cortney said, we attended a conference a little bit ago, which FDA was present. We are hoping that it's 2020, for the most part it seems like most of the regulations that they are considering are firm. It kind of just looks more of a review, so if you're moving towards 2020, it's probably best to shift ... We can't necessarily consult and tell you when these are actually going to be in place, we don't necessarily know ourselves, but it does look towards the shift of the new regulations.

 

Cortney: It is 2020 for businesses. I just want to point this out. Businesses that have over $10 million in food sales, if you are a business that doesn't fall in that category and you have under $10 million in food sales of your company, that regulation is 2021, so there is that extra year to comply for those companies that don't fall under that $10 million food sales category.

 

Sarah: Somebody asked really quickly, since we're just getting started in our Q & A, can you repeat what you said about not declaring zeros for foods?

 

Cortney: So, that's actually just for supplements. There are a few ingredients, I believe it's five, that you can declare zero on supplement facts panel, but for voluntary nutrients as well as for certain others, you can not declare zero. That is the new regulation.

 

Sarah: How much do you guys know about milk? We have a lot of questions coming in about milk.

 

Cortney: I would be curious to know in regards to how the labeling, what are the labeling guidelines for things like that. As far as I know, it might fall under different labeling regulations as far as the USDA goes, that might not be something that's FDA regulated, but I would think that the pasteurized milk products are going to be in cartons and packages and in the retail stores do fall under the same labeling regulations for the FDA.

 

Sarah: So, that's what Matt has asked here. Would you recommend that USDA regulated products begin voluntarily complying to prepare?

 

Cortney: You know, that was kind of a hot topic at the conference that we attended this fall. Not to keep going back to that, but a lot of these topics are the same and a lot people had questions about should my USDA regulated products be updated now, or ... There was just a push for wanting to align the two for USDA regulated versus FDA regulated products. My suggestion personally would be to start making the shift toward complying just because I do think it is going to be upcoming, but we can get Mollie’s opinion as well.

 

Mollie: I kind of feel short and simple, better to be safe than sorry. I would just, kind of like Cortney said, make the shift towards that direction and get it tested so you are prepared for if it is mandated by the FDA.

 

Cortney: And I know there's been some discussion of those two arms kind of merging. Early discussions.

 

Sarah: Yeah. Like Mollie said, better safe than sorry. Someone else has asked, what is included in a calorie statement in addition to calories? Is there any ...

 

Cortney: So, the calorie statement is essentially just something that you have to have on your board that says that the calories are based off a 2,000 calorie diet. So, it is a FDA provided statement and if you would like to reach out to us, we can get that statement to you, but essentially it's just a note on your board that says these calories that are listed above are based off of a 2,000 calorie diet, so it's similar to the statement that's on the bottom of the nutrition facts panel. The calorie statements are very similar, so it's an FDA mandated statement, essentially.

 

Sarah: Okay. And how will the new format and new declarations impact people that produce products in foreign countries?

 

Mollie: As of right now, these are only affecting labels within the US. So, if your products manufactured outside the US, but you will be selling it within the US, and it will be in retail in the US, your product will be affected, but any like Canadian nutrition facts panels, those are not affected by these same regulations. These are only US products as of right now.

 

Sarah: Okay. Keep submitting your questions. There's so many I can barely keep up. So, one thing I will say just to preempt a few questions, yes, everyone will be getting a copy of both this recording and of the power point slides. It'll be sent directly to you and to anyone else that work with who did register. It'll also be available on our website, EurofinsUS.com. A lot of people have questions about costs of different tests. We don't usually discuss costs on live webinars, simply because they get dated, so if you did ask a question about cost, either Mollie or Cortney will reach out to you after this presentation pretty quickly and give you some answers on that.
So you guys know when you might need to connect with one of our gene scan contacts, but how is GMO labeling factoring into these labeling discussions?

 

Mollie: I think you can probably touch a little more on this, but so Eurofins is capable of supporting your label claims, not just with, you know, anything specific, so allergens, pesticides, all of that, that you're going to make a label claim for, so we can give you the data to support it, we don't specifically do label claims, but we do offer in our network, to actually test for it.

 

Cortney: Yeah, and as far as the non-GMO labeling goes, that regulation is of course, not exactly tied in with these nutrition labeling regulations, so it is two different things, however, I think it's a really great idea if you are going to be updating your label, to use the current format, or the new format, that you also do test for GMO, if that's something that you're looking to make a claim on. As Mollie said, we have the testing to substantiate your claim, however, within our nutrition facts panel service, it's not something that we provide as far as putting that non-GMO or other claims on the panel for you.

 

Sarah: Softball. Does ENAC offer both linear and tabular format label?

 

Mollie: Absolutely. Yeah, we can offer linear and tabular and we can also if your product falls under this category or is applicable, we can provide the simplified format. So, if your product has a number of nutrients that are insignificant, you can have a simplified format and we can provide that for you as well.

 

Cortney: If you go to EurofinsUS.com/food, our testing services page has a breakdown and a picture of what each different type of label actually looks like if you'd like to get a snapshot or idea for what might look best on your packaging and what your product needs.

 

Sarah: So, if you're using sweeteners, such as exclusively 100% agave, maple honey would the total sugar and added sugar have the same value?

 

Cortney: Yes. So, in the case of sweeteners, and it kind of depends on the product, so I'd like to hear a little bit more about this product specifically, but the answer to that I think in short would be, yes. You know, if you are using a sweetener for any sweetening purposes essentially it's not coming naturally from the product, the added sugar and the total sugar should be the same.

 

Mollie: Yeah, I think, bottom line, if you're calling it a sweetener, you should treat it as an added sugar. Just kind of a note, too, if you're not entirely aware of what your added sugar content is, compared to the total sugar, you do have the option to declare your total sugars as added sugars. So, if you have 20 grams of sugars in your product and you're not entirely sure what is added versus natural, you can declare the 20 as added.

 

Sarah: And I think we'll just have time for about a one more question. I have some great information to share with you guys about resources that we'll be offering exclusively to the people that tuned in today, but last question. With the simplified format fact panel on something like a diet soft drink, is not a significant source of other nutrients approved for that footnote?

 

Cortney: Yes. So, assuming that the nutrients that are not a significant source of ... What makes that claim is that it's 2% or less of the daily value, so if you have these nutrients in amounts less than 2% of the daily value, that foot note is acceptable for the simplified format.

 

Sarah: Okay. Great. Do you want to flip forward really quick for me? So, really quickly, you guys are the first to hear about these new opportunities, but releasing tomorrow, February 9th, we will be launching Eurofins Nutrition Analysis Center's first ever nutrition labeling guide. That's a simplified PDF and print version guide basically breaking down all of this information and connecting you directly with the team members here at Eurofins that can answer your more difficult questions that I see have come in, in our questions panel, so look for that in your inbox. It'll get sent with this recording and with the slides and you're welcome to share that with any of your colleagues or industry contacts that are asking the same questions that you have.

 

Also, we have another webinar coming up in a little over a month. It's about microbiomes as a tool for manufacturers and that will be hosted by Chief Scientific Officer Doug Marshall and Doctor Greg Siragusa, both of Eurofins microbiology team. So you can register for that at EurofinsUS.com.

 

And just to wrap up, I'd like to thank all of our attendees again for tuning in. This was our first webinar of the year and it was a great success and I'd also really like to thank Cortney and Mollie for sharing their time and expertise with us today. They'll be following up with all of your questions and answering your questions about cost, so with that, one final thank you and everyone have a wonderful day.