|FD&C Act||Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act|
|FDA||U.S. Food and Drug Administration|
|FLAPS||Food Label and Package Survey|
|FMIA||Federal Meat Inspection Act|
|fMRI||Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging|
|FSA||Food Standards Agency|
|FSIS||Food Safety and Inspection Service|
|FTC||Federal Trade Commission|
|GDA||Guideline Daily Amounts|
|GMA||Grocery Manufacturer’s Association|
|GMA/IFIC||Grocery Manufacturer’s Association/International Food and Information Council|
|HHS||U.S. Department of Health and Human Services|
|IOM||Institute of Medicine|
|LS||Labeled serving size|
|LSRO||Life Sciences Research Organization|
|M-% DI||Monochrome Percent Daily Intake|
|MTL||Multiple Traffic Light|
|NAS||National Academy of Sciences|
|NCHS||National Center for Health Statistics|
|NFP||Nutrition Facts panel|
|NIH||National Institutes of Health|
|NIP||Nutrition Information panel|
|NLEA||Nutrition Labeling and Education Act|
|NRC||National Research Council|
|NSLP/SBP||National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs|
|PHVO||Partially hydrogenated vegetable oil|
|PPIA||Poultry Products Inspection Act|
|RACC||Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed|
|RDA||Recommended Dietary Allowance|
|RDI||Reference Daily Intake|
|SNAP||Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program|
|SNAP–Ed||Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education|
|STL||Single Traffic Light|
|UL||Tolerable Upper Level|
|US RDA||Recommended Daily Allowances|
|USDA||U.S. Department of Agriculture|
|WHO||World Health Organization|
|WIC||Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children|
Sugars eaten separately or used as ingredients in processed or prepared foods, such as white sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, corn syrup, corn syrup solids, high-fructose corn syrup, malt syrup, maple syrup, pancake syrup, fructose sweetener, liquid fructose, honey, molasses, anhydrous dextrose, and crystalline dextrose. May contain oligosaccharides. These do not include naturally occurring sugars such as lactose in milk or fructose in fruits. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines added sugars as sugars or other ingredients added during processing or packaging that functionally substitute for sugars, such as fruit juice concentrates, jams, and jellies, including ingredients that may functionally increase the sugars content of a food, such as enzymes (For regulatory language see 21 CFR 101.60[c]).
A formula or series of calculations in which a food product’s nutrient content is incorporated to produce a value by which the overall value of the product’s contribution to the diet can be determined.
Body Mass Index (BMI)
An indirect measure of body fat calculated as the ratio of a person’s body weight in kilograms to the square of a person’s height in meters. In children and youth, assessment of BMI is based on growth charts for age and gender and is referred to as the BMI for Age.
Daily Reference Value (DRV)
A set of dietary references that applies to fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, carbohydrate, protein, fiber, sodium, and potassium. They are part of the FDA Daily Value label reference.
Daily Value (DV)
Dietary reference values established by FDA and used in nutrition labeling that are based on recommended daily intake levels of nutrients needed for good health. DV comprises Reference Daily Intakes (RDIs) and DRVs.
Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA)
A federal summary of the latest dietary guidance for the American public based on current scientific evidence and medical knowledge. The Guidelines are issued jointly by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and revised every 5 years.
Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI)
A set of four distinct nutrient-based reference values established by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies that replaced the former Recommended Dietary Allowances in the United States. They include Estimated Average Requirements (EARs), Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs), Adequate Intakes (AIs), and Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL).
The levels of total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, or sodium that, when exceeded, triggers the need for a disclosure statement when a nutrient content claim is used on labels of FDA-regulated food products. The disclosure statement (i.e., “See nutrition information for ___ content” with the blank filled in with the name of the nutrient exceeding the specified level) must be placed adjacent to the claim and is intended to alert consumers to levels of nutrients that may increase the risk of disease or health-related condition. Levels are specified in 21 CFR 101.13(h).
The levels of total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, or sodium in a food above which the food will be disqualified from making a health claim. Levels are specified in 21 CFR 101.14(a)(4).
Calories ingested as food and beverages.
Foods and meals designed for ready availability, use, or consumption and sold at eating establishments for quick availability or take-out.
Front-of-package (FOP) nutrition rating systems and symbols
Systems that use nutrient rating criteria and symbols to indicate that a product has certain nutritional characteristics. Symbols are often placed on the principal display panel of the product, but may also be found on the side, top, or back panels or on shelf tags.
Guideline Daily Amounts (GDAs)
GDAs are nutrient intake levels that most people are guided to consume daily for a healthy diet. They provide a voluntary benchmark against which the contribution from specific nutrients per portion of a food product can be assessed. The food and beverage and retail industries derive their GDA values from international, European Union (EU), and government guidelines. GDAs were first seen in the United Kingdom and are increasingly being used in the EU. The Confederation of the Food and Drink Industries of the EU (CIAA) proposed a harmonized industry approach to nutrition labeling across the EU, including the use of standardized GDA values.
Claims that describe a relationship between a food, food substance, or dietary supplement ingredient and a reduction in the risk of developing a disease or health-related condition.
The process of enabling people to increase control over and to improve their health through networks and initiatives that create healthy environments. To reach a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, an individual or group must be able to identify and to realize aspirations, to satisfy needs, and to change or cope with the environment. Health is a resource for everyday life, not the objective of living, and is a positive concept emphasizing social and personal resoureces, as well as physical capacities.
For children and adolescents, a healthful diet provides recommended amounts of nutrients and other food components within estimated energy requirements (EERs) to promote normal growth and development, a healthy weight trajectory, and energy balance. A healthful diet also reduces the long-term risk for obesity and related chronic diseases associated with aging, including type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.
A term used in this report that refers to meeting guidelines of qualifying criteria for saturated and trans fats, sodium, and added sugars.
Offering interpretations, explanations, or guidance.
Labeled serving size
Serving size as determined by the product manufacturer; based on the Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed (RACC) and regulations for determing serving size.
Weigh at least 6 ounces (oz) per labeled serving; contain not less than 40 g of food, or combinations of foods, from at least two of the following four food groups: bread, cereal, rice, and pasta group; fruits and vegetables group; milk, yogurt, and cheese group; and meat, poultry, fish, dry beans, eggs, and nuts group; and are represented as, or is in a form commonly understood to be, a main dish (e.g., not a beverage or a dessert). See full requirements in 21 CFR 101.13(m).
An organizational function and a set of processes for creating, communicating, and delivering value to customers and for managing customer relationships in ways that benefit an organization and its stakeholders. Marketing encompasses a wide range of activities, including market research, analyzing the competition, positioning a new product, pricing products and services, and promoting them through advertising, consumer promotion, trade promotions, public relations, and sales.
Weigh at least 10 oz per labeled serving; contain not less than three 40 g portions of food, or combinations of foods, from two or more of the following four food groups: bread, cereal, rice, and pasta group; fruits and vegetables group; milk, yogurt, and cheese group; and meat, poultry, fish, dry beans, eggs, and nuts group; and are represented as, or is in a form commonly understood to be, breakfast, lunch, dinner, or meal. See full requirements in 21 CFR 101.13(l).
Mixed dishes not measurable with a cup
Examples include burritos, egg rolls, pizza, pizza rolls, quiches, all types of sandwiches. Defined in 21 CFR 101.12(b) in Table 2.
An illustration of the five food groups using a place setting. It is part of a larger communications initiative based on 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans to help consumers make better food choices and to remind Americans to eat healthfully.
USDA-developed system by which Americans can determine how much of each food group to eat in order to meet daily nutritional requirements.
Nutrient content claim
Label claim that characterizes the level of a nutrient in a food (i.e., nutrient content claim) made in accordance with FDA’s authorizing regulations. Nutrient content claims describe the level of a nutrient in the product, using terms such as “free,” “high,” and “low,” or they compare the level of a nutrient in a food to that of another food, using terms such as “more,” “reduced,” and “light.”
The amount of nutrients that a food contains per unit volume or mass. Nutrient density is independent of energy density, although in practice the nutrient density of a food is often described in relationship to the food’s energy density. Fruits and vegetables are nutrient dense but not energy dense. Compared to foods of high fat content, carbonated soft drinks are not particularly energy dense because they are made up primarily of water and carbohydrate, but because they are otherwise low in nutrients, their energy density is high with respect to their nutrient content.
The science of categorizing foods according to their nutritional composition and the categorization of foods for specific purposes on the basis of their nutrient composition, according to scientific principles.
An excess amount of subcutaneous body fat in proportion to lean body mass. In adults, a BMI of 30 or greater is considered obese. In this report, obesity in children and youth refers to the age- and gender-specific BMI that is equal to or greater than the 95th percentile of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) BMI charts.
Of or pertaining to order, rank, scale, or position in a series.
Percent Daily Value (% DV)
Percentages found in the Nutrition Facts panel on food labels that describe the nutrient contribution of the food to a 2,000-calorie diet for most nutrients. A high percentage means a serving of the food contains a lot of the nutrient, and a low percentage means it contains a little. The goal is to choose foods that together give close to 100 percent of each nutrient per day. Vitamins and minerals are based upon highest RDA values established by the National Research Council (NRC) in 1968 and 1989.
A term used throughout this report to indicate that a critical component nutrient met its defined eligibility and qualifying criteria for the purpose of inclusion in the FOP symbol system.
Represents the amount of food an individual chooses to consume for a meal or snack. Portions can be larger or smaller than the serving sizes listed on the food label or the Food Guide Pyramid.
With regard to obesity, primary prevention represents avoiding the occurrence of obesity in a population; secondary prevention represents early detection of disease through screening with the purpose of limiting its occurrence; and tertiary prevention involves preventing the sequelae of obesity in childhood and adulthood.
Privately owned and operated; something that is held under patent, trademark, or copyright by a private person or company.
Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA)
Daily intake level of a nutrient that was considered to be adequate to meet the requirements of almost all healthy individuals in each life-stage and for each sex at the time the requirements were developed.
Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed (RACC)
Amount of food customarily consumed per eating occasion by persons in a population group as determined by FDA; used as the regulatory basis for determining labeled serving sizes on the Nutrition Facts panel. Levels are specified in 21 CFR 101.12.
Reference Daily Intake (RDI)
Nutrient reference values for vitamins and minerals established by FDA. In conjuction with DRVs are known as Daily Values on Nutrition Facts panel and are specified in 21 CFR 101.9(7)(iii) and (8)(iv).
Prominent or conspicuous; a striking point or feature.
Shelf tag nutrition labeling
Nutrition labeling present on the shelf tag of retail stores indicating that a product contains nutrient contents that make the product a more nutritious choice. Nutrition symbols or scores or both are displayed alongside the product price and bar code.
Structure/function claims describe the role of a nutrient or dietary ingredient intended to affect normal structure or function in humans, such as “Calcium builds strong bones.” Such claims may also characterize the means by which a nutrient or dietary ingredient acts to maintain such structure or function, for example, “Fiber maintains bowel regularity,” or “Antioxidants maintain cell integrity,” or else they may describe general well-being from consumption of a nutrient or dietary ingredient.
A characteristic graphic shape on a food label or in labeling, which may enclose words, numbers, or other graphic shapes, and which may utilize characteristic colors, the intent of which, as a whole, is to represent the nutritional properties of a food.
Symbol based on claim criteria (FDA, USDA, or other organization)
A system in which a symbol is awarded to food products that meet USDA or other organization requirements for claims, such as “low fat” or “high fiber.” Multiple symbols can be awarded for a single product for many programs.
The amount of naturally occurring sugar in a food product plus any sugar added during processing. It is defined for nutrition labeling purposes as the sum of all free mono- and disaccharides. Oligosaccharides are not included.
Up to the late 1960s, there was little information on food labels to identify the nutrient content of the food. From 1941 to 1966, when information on the calorie or sodium content was included on some food labels, those foods were considered by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to be for “special dietary uses,” that is, intended to meet particular dietary needs caused by physical, pathological, or other conditions.2,3,4 At that time meals were generally prepared at home from basic ingredients and there was little demand for nutritional information (Kessler, 1989). However, as increasing numbers of processed foods came into the marketplace, consumers requested information that would help them understand the products they purchased (WHC, 1970). In response to this dilemma, a recommendation of the 1969 White House Conference on Food, Nutrition, and Health was that FDA consider developing a system for identifying the nutritional qualities of food:
Every manufacturer should be encouraged to provide truthful nutritional information about his products to enable consumers to follow recommended dietary regimens. (WHC, 1970)
This chapter provides a history of the milestones in nutrition labeling since 1969. These events are also detailed in the annex to this chapter.
VOLUNTARY NUTRITION LABELING
In response to the White House Conference, FDA developed a working draft of various approaches to nutrition labeling and asked for comment by nutritionists, consumer groups, and the food industry. Then in 1972 the agency proposed regulations that specified a format to provide nutrition information on packaged food labels. Inclusion of such information was to be voluntary, except when nutrition claims were made on the label, in labeling, or in advertising, or when nutrients were added to the food. In those cases, nutrition labeling would be mandatory.5 This
1 This Appendix contains material excerpted from: IOM. 2010. Front-of-Package Nutrition Rating Systems and Symbols: Phase I Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
2 Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, Sec. 411(c)(3) (21 U.S.C. Part 350).
3 6 FR 5921.
4 31 FR 8521.
5 37 FR 6493.