Reading Food Nutrition Labels – American vs. England

Nutrition Labels, they confuse us all admit it.  From the amount per serving down to the total carbs per meal.  Wouldn’t it be easier if they labeled every packaged with this label on the left.

Well, to our luck two major food industry trade associations, the Grocery Manufacturers Association and the Food Marketing Institute, have gone ahead and developed a front of package label without waiting for the recommendations from the Institute of Medicine. It’s based on “Nutrition Keys” such as calories, saturated fat, sodium, and sugars.

The manufactures only have to provide us with one of the figures and leave out the others, or they may choose to place 2,3, or all 4 on the package.

I’m a bigger fan of this label because it is on the front of the package; but what if we got rid of both of these labels and switched to the red light green light label like England has!

What is the red light / green light label you ask?

With the same idea in mind as our packaging labels, England has adopted a similar front of package labeling.  Theirs provides color coded information based on a traffic light idea. Green, yellow, and red. The idea is that shoppers can aim to have more of their cart filled with green, less with yellow, and minimize the red.

GREAT idea, right!?


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