FDOC comments on FDA’s labeling proposal

Proposed revisions to food labels include the addition of a mandatory added sugars declaration and more.

BARTOW, Fla. – The Florida Department of Citrus submitted comments in response to the Food and Drug Administration’s proposed revisions to the Nutrition Facts panel and serving size designations.

Proposed revisions to food labels include the addition of a mandatory added sugars declaration, the removal of the requirement to include vitamin C on the label and an increase to the Daily Value for vitamin C and other nutrients. The FDA has also proposed “dual-column labeling” to show nutrition information for different serving sizes.

These revisions could impact the citrus juice industry and how the healthfulness of citrus juices may be perceived by the public. The FDOC supports the addition of a mandatory added sugars declaration though more clarification and research needs to be done on how the changes can best serve consumers. The FDOC also queried FDA regarding serving sizes and dual-column labeling.

This is the first major revision of the Nutrition Facts panel since the panel was mandated as part of the 1990 Nutrition Labeling and Education Act and will impact nutrition labels for all foods and beverages.

In other citrus nutrition news:

The Juice Products Association (JPA) sponsored a breakfast session at the 2014 Experiment Biology meeting held April 26 through April 30 in San Diego.

The goal of the session, titled “What’s the Truth About 100% Fruit Juice – Squeezing Fact from Fiction,” was to make health and nutrition professionals aware of the research supporting the health benefits of 100% fruit juice and to help dispel various myths and other reports frequently seen in the media that disparage 100% fruit juice primarily because of its sugar content.

The session was well attended and featured Drs. Adam Drewnowski, Mario Ferruzzi, and Roger Clemens presenting published and new research related to the health benefits of 100% fruit juice. A session paper is being planned to be published in a peer-reviewed journal.

The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) held its fourth meeting on July 17 and 18.

The DGAC is currently reviewing diet-related research. Recommendations from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans are intended for Americans ages 2 years and over, including those at increased risk of chronic disease, and provide the basis for federal food and nutrition policy and education initiatives. A new version of the Guidelines will be released in 2015.

The DGAC meetings can be viewed by the public via webcast with the next meeting scheduled for Sept. 16 and 17.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND; formerly the American Dietetic Association) recently published its 2013 workgroup’s findings on research related to 100% fruit juice consumption and health, titled “Dietary and Metabolic Impact of Fruit Juice Consumption.”

One of the key issues addressed by the workgroup was the role of 100% fruit juice intake and weight in children and adolescents. A review of the science led the group to conclude that the evidence does not support an association between 100% fruit juice consumption and weight status or adiposity in children ages 2 to 18 years of age.

This analysis is available to help inform the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee as they develop the new Guidelines for 2015.