Frequently Asked Questions by Manufacturers on the FDA’s New Nutrition Facts Label Change

The Brand Leader’s FDA Nutrition Facts Label FAQ

Now is the time to act to ensure a thoughtful approach to the FDA nutrition label change. It impacts the entire ecosystem of food, beverage and supplement manufacturers and their supply chain partners. It also impacts shoppers’ decision-making and how brands might position themselves. 

These are the top 3 questions leaders should be asking in order to take full advantage of this change.

Why did the FDA make changes to the nutrition facts label?

The FDA’s new regulations were built from consumer need — an outcry for transparency with what they’re feeding themselves and their families. The government is representing the voice of the consumer, mandating change so they can bridge the gap and get label-reading shoppers more information.

Think of it less as a regulation change or a plate change in your supply chain. It’s more about satisfying the changing relationship that today’s consumers have with the food they buy.

Ask what role your brand plays within its category, and what role it plays with the consumer. This is a huge opportunity to take a competitive stance in the hearts and minds of shoppers.

Which changes will impact my business most?

Every single food label will need to change, but some differences will be more apparent to consumers than others, like:

  • Serving sizes

  • Calories

  • Added sugars

  • Multi-serving products

  • Odd-size packages

  • Sodium and Dietary Fiber

  • Vitamin D and Potassium

  • Fat

  • Percent Daily Value

Let’s get specific on three of the key changes that will influence your packaging and product performance most:

  1. Added Sugars: Called out separately as a component of Total Sugars, consumers may reduce, replace or discontinue purchasing certain foods after learning how much sugar they contain. This presents an opportunity for lower sugar products.

  2. Dual Column: Certain sized products will require more real estate, and you’ll need to move artwork to accommodate per serving plus per package nutrition information. Consumers will clearly see the implication of eating the whole bag, box or bottle of food and drink.

  3. Serving Sizes: Impacting more than just caloric content, claims will need to be revisited. Some could improve (e.g. more protein) and some could be harmful (e.g. more sodium). Not only will some salty products have larger serving sizes, but also the %DV for sodium has gone down.

Visualizing your label with the three changes above, will shoppers like what they see when they pick up your product, or will they put it back on the shelf in exchange for something that appears more desirable?

Insights like these are critical for basing label, claim and packaging decisions that will position brands for success in this new change.

How do I persuade my organization to act boldly in response to these changes?

The FDA nutrition facts label change creates opportunities and resets marketplace dynamics by creating new winners and new losers. Use our insights to create the winning vision that will establish yourself as a leader in your organization. The strategy and change management you plan for now will set you apart from your competition, as an innovator who listens to your consumers instead of a manufacturer that simply complies with regulation updates. Think beyond the label. Build your brand and act now.

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