Food Label News, Government Actions for Food Labels, FDA Regulations, Food Labels, Nutrition Labels
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Volume 8, Number 11 - November 2007


About Food Consulting Company

"Thank you for the thorough analysis and quick turn around of our labels. All points have been implemented and we are already moving forward to final artwork. Your team is easy to do business with."

~ Jay Highman
Nature's One, Inc.

Greetings! This issue of Food Label News marks the beginning of the eighth year of publication and free distribution to clients and guest subscribers. Food Consulting Company is proud to report that Food Label News has been delivered each month for 84 months straight! The newsletter reports on timely FDA actions and each month a reader question is answered. See Food Label News archive.

Q.  Are sample food packages required to include Nutrition Facts or other food label components?    S.L., Importer, Illinois


A.  Food samples do not have to be labeled with any of the required label components as long as the package clearly identifies the product as a sample. However...  Read more: Reader Q&A page.


Submit a question for Reader Q&A (no charge).

New! 24/7 Access to Food Labels Order Work

To better serve clients, Food Consulting Company announces a new online 24/7 client access system. The system allows clients to view information they have submitted for Food Labels Order Work (FLOW) and to view and download completed work files quickly and easily when needed long after the work has been completed. Clients do this by logging on to a web address that is client-unique and secure. Having 24/7 access via the unique URL means that it is not necessary for clients to keep track of files or to store files at their business site. Debut of the FLOW coincides with the beginning of Food Consulting Company’s 15th year of providing food labeling assistance. Through the years Food Consulting Company has continually strived to provide accurate, on-time food labeling help with maximum efficiency for clients.

Congress Pushes Food Labels Trans Fat Revision

A bill titled "Trans Fat Truth in Labeling Act of 2007" (HR 3783) was introduced into the U.S. House in October 2007. As written the bill requires FDA to issue a final rule revising the Code of Federal Regulations so that:

  • if the trans fat content of a serving of food is less than 0.5 gram, and

  • if the trans fat content of a serving of the food is declared in the labeling of the food,

the trans fat content of a serving shall be expressed through the use of an asterisk stating that the trans fat content is less than 0.5 gram, instead of expressing the trans fat content as zero.

The bill establishes the effective date for compliance to be 18 months after the act becomes law.

Backers of the bill are disturbed with current regulations that allow up to 0.49 gram of trans fat per serving to be reported as 0g trans fat in the Nutrition Facts. The backers refer to a scientific review that states "from a nutritional standpoint, the consumption of trans fatty acids results in considerable harm but no apparent benefit."

To read the bill, search for bill number "HR 3783" at

Commentary: The U.S. House action does not affect trans fat reporting on food labels until the measure is included in a bill that the president signs. If the president does sign a bill containing the measure, many product labels will have to undergo revision within the time period stated in the law. Usually food label requirements are subject to uniform compliance dates, but as written the bill does not defer to the uniform date. FDA sets uniform compliance dates in order to minimize the economic impact of label changes. Read Food Label News February 2007 to learn about established uniform compliance dates.

FDA Announces Public Meeting on Salt in Food

FDA is conducting a public meeting on November 29, 2007, to solicit information and comments from interested persons on the current framework of policies relating to salt and sodium in foods. FDA also wants comments on a citizen petition submitted by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) requesting that FDA:

  • change regulatory status of salt from GRAS (generally recognized as safe) to food additive

  • require limits on salt in processed foods

  • require health messages related to salt and sodium

See Federal Register notice for specific questions FDA wishes to address.

Commentary: Food Label News has reported on earlier efforts by CSPI to force revision in salts regulatory status to "food additive" and to force industry to lower sodium content of products; see March 2005, August 2006. Refresh on FDA's position for the current framework: June 2002, March 2003, June 2003; refresh on USDA's position in relation to FDA: February 2006.

At Your Service: U.S. Importers - Food Additives

Importers can order Non-standard Full Label Compliance service if uncertain of the U.S. regulatory status of the ingredients in a formulation.  Food Consulting Company will research the approval status and provide reformulation guidance as indicated along with all other services included in the standard Full Label Compliance package.

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