Washington — Front-of-pack (FOP) health claims increase as consumers’ nutritional concerns intensify, an article in Amber Waves magazine reveals.
After Congress passed legislation in the early 1990s requiring all packaged products carry nutrition facts panels (NFP), there was a decline in FOP nutritional claims, the magazine notes. However, when the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Surgeon General deemed obesity an epidemic in 2001, claims related to calories and sugar spiked.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, by 2010, 43 percent of foods and beverages carried at least one health callout, such as low fat, high fiber and gluten-free, Amber Waves reports. In 2003, the FDA mandated the disclosure of trans fat on NFPs and come 2010, manufacturers had responded — products were reformulated and low or no trans fat claims ranked the fifth most popular FOP health callout.
Recently gluten-free claims have risen. The article reads: “From 2001 to 2010, the percentage of new products with a 'no gluten' claim increased from one to 12 percent, which was the largest percentage-point increase among health and nutrition related claims. This occurred despite the challenges presented in reformulating products for the gluten-free market in some food categories. By 2010, 'no gluten' ranked second only to claims related to vitamins and minerals.”