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Volume 13, Number 5 - May 2013

Greetings from Food Label News. Food labels are on the the national agenda with the recent bill introduced to Congress just last week. This month we explore the merits of mandatory GMO labeling as well as continue our 10-part nutrition analysis series with the rounding rules for nutrition labeling. You can stay informed and join the lively conversation in the Food Label Community on LinkedIn.  

In this issue you'll find:


"I so wish I had the wealth of information from Food Label Community  five years ago as I began on this unexpected journey into the food labeling regulatory world. Just knowing what a CFR is and how to use it is key. No one really teaches this basic knowledge. I am grateful to have this group of food labeling specialists to help me find my way!"

– Jonette Schue
Faribault Foods, Inc.

Mandatory GMO Labeling: Yes or No

Nutrition Analysis Series - Part 7 of 10
Apply the Rounding Rules

Reader Q&A: Dual Declaration Nutrition Facts

What's News in the Food Label Community


Karen C. Duester, President

Mandatory GMO Labeling: Yes or No

The debate over labeling genetically engineered foods continues, now in Congress with the April 24th  introduction of the "Genetically Engineered Right-to-Know Act." If passed, this legislation would require FDA to develop proposed regulations within one year of the bill's enactment to assure all foods that contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are clearly labeled. FDA's current policy statement is that genetically engineered crops pose no greater health risks than traditional foods.

In general, consumer groups support disclosure of this information while major agricultural companies oppose it, saying that it creates unnecessary fear and confusion among shoppers. Further, industry indicates concern about sufficient supply of non-GMO corn and soy to meet manufacturing needs.

Clearly, momentum continues to build on the topic. Though California's Prop 37 was defeated in November 2012, propositions are appearing on Washington and Oregon ballots. And, Whole Foods recently announced an initiative to label all genetically modified foods within 5 years.

The question about consumers' right to know is not new but the prospect of a federal standard is. If passed it would unify the states and eliminate the potential of a myriad of differing local laws.

What's News in the
Food Label Community

U.S. federal legislation introduced for mandatory GMO labeling

GMA launches Facts Up Front educational website

Natural: Will USDA organics lead the way on a workable definition?

Must the Nutrition Facts graphic always be a rectangle?

New trade association guidelines for caffeine labeling

Connect with other food labelers on LinkedIn

Reader Favorites

California Says NO to GMO Labeling


Search answers to food label questions

Passing such a bill has steep implications for food labelers, as every food label for every product that uses GMOs would have to change — or manufacturers would need to source 100% non-GMO ingredients. At the end of the day, it will be an interesting debate that puts food labels on the national agenda. Stay close to the dialogue in the Food Label Community on LinkedIn.

Nutrition Analysis Series - Part 7 of 10
Apply the Rounding Rules

This month's installment in our 10-part series overviews Step 7 of the Nutrition Analysis process: FDA rounding rules for displaying the nutrient profiles within the Nutrition Facts Panel. This series is based on a widely regarded publication distributed by ESHA Research to users of Genesis R&D, the industry’s leading nutrition analysis software. 

You will find a quick one-pager that shows the FDA-specified rounding rules for the nutrient declarations within the Nutrition Facts Panel.

View/print Part 7 of the series

If you missed earlier parts of the series you can view and download them now. (Get Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5 or Part 6.) The print-ready pages from all parts of the series will add up to the complete guide.

Reader Q&A

Find answers to our readers' questions or send us your question for an upcoming issue.


If we are processing raw product, can we show the cooked nutritional values on the label instead of the raw nutritionals? If this were allowed, wouldn't we need a two-column Nutrition Facts Panel as packaged and as prepared?
D.B., Wisconsin, Food Processor


FDA requires that nutrition information shown on the package is for the product as sold. You are also allowed to include a second column to the right of the "as packaged" information that shows the "as prepared" values. This is called a dual declaration panel. Read more.

What matters in food labeling

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