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Front-of-Pack Labeling Comments Wanted at FDA

Nutrition labels on the front of food packages are coming to a grocery shelf near you.  

Before that happens, however, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) wants to know what consumers want to see on so-called “front-of-pack” labeling and on shelf tags in retail stores.

food-labels-featured.jpgFDA is asking the public to provide their comments and any information that might help the nation’s top food safety agency make front-of-package labeling useful.  FDA says it wants to make point-of-purchase nutrition information more helpful to consumers.

This includes information on the main display panel of food products, called “front-of-pack” labeling, as well as information on those little on-shelf tags in retail stores.

The agency is seeking information about:

-the extent to which consumers notice, use, and understand nutrition symbols on front-of-pack labeling of food packages or on shelf tags in retail stores

-research that assesses and compares the effectiveness of particular approaches to front-of-pack labeling

-graphic design, marketing, and advertising data and information that can help develop better point-of-purchase nutrition information

-how point-of-purchase information may affect decisions by food manufacturers to reformulate products.

The goal of front-of-package nutrition labeling is to increase the number of consumers who readily notice, understand, and use point-of-purchase information to make better decisions about nutrition for themselves and their families.

Comments may be sent to http://www.regulations.gov/, by entering Docket No. FDA-2010-N-0210. Written comments also may be sent to the Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305) Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Room 1061, Rockville Md., 20852.

Deadline for comments is July 28, 2010.

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