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Volume 13, Number 8 - August 2013

Greetings from Food Label News. We hope this finds you staying cool and enjoying some summer fun. Between BBQs, you can read about how to steer clear of common mistakes food labelers make. This month we also wrap up our series on Nutrition Analysis with the final installment about important resources. And, be sure to stay connected (even on your summer vacation!) through the Food Label Community on LinkedIn. Happy Summer!

In this issue you'll find:


"The labels have been SENT TO PRINT!! YIPPIE!! You are very good at what you do and you have taken nearly all the stress off. We thank you for that."

– Heather Maestas
Nothing Bundt Cakes

Common Mistakes Food Labelers Make

Nutrition Analysis Series - Part 10 of 10
Additional Resources

Reader Q&A: Honey as Vegan?

What's News in the Food Label Community


Karen C. Duester, President

Common Mistakes Food Labelers Make

Food label newbies and veterans alike can be guilty of the occasional food label faux pas. In our role as food labeling experts, we spot these snafus before they become serious issues, attracting unwanted attention from FDA. The good news is that accurate food labels inform consumers and keep regulators happy. Here are some of the most notable:


Listing a multi-component ingredient as a single ingredient – Bread crumbs and baking chocolate are comprised of sub-ingredients, and each ingredient in a food must be listed on the label. You can choose to group like ingredients together or use parentheses to declare sub-ingredients.


Ingredient statements that are too long – Salt is salt is salt. It’s simpler and more consumer friendly to use a composite ingredient statement that adds all like ingredients together.


Incorrect formatting for Nutrition Facts – Lines, bars, fonts, spacing and type styles come with tight specifications. Leave your creativity to other aspects of the label.


Incorrect serving size on Nutrition Facts – While consumers may consider a food with fewer calories and less fat more attractive, we cannot choose the serving size to influence nutrient values. We must follow FDA's "Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed."


Incorrect rounding on Nutrition Facts – Silly mistakes happen. Look twice if you see a food item with 63.5 calories.

Getting the label right is key as easily-identifiable mistakes can call into question every other element of the label. To prevent inadvertent food label faux pas and ensure your food label complies with FDA regulations, take a look at this quick one-pager. It can help steer you clear of the common mistakes food labelers make.

What's News in the
Food Label Community


Restaurant menu labeling: who cares about calories?


Unequal serving sizes in a two-serving container


Allergen & gluten-free labeling for glucose syrup derived from wheat starch


Labeling "other ingredients" for dietary supplements


CFIA guidance for manufacturers and importers of flavor packets

• EU comments on fat taxes and self-regulation of junk food marketing

Connect with other food labelers on LinkedIn

Reader Favorites

What criteria must be met for a product to be labeled vegetarian?


Search answers to food label questions

Claims can be the most challenging part of developing compliant food labels. Nutrient content claims such as healthy or high fiber cannot be used at will as they are defined by FDA regulations. These claims can be used only on foods with a specific nutrient profile. To learn more about nutrient content claims, consult the Nutrient and Health Claims U.S. and Canadian Regulatory Guide co-developed by Food Consulting Company and Silliker.

Nutrition Analysis Series - Part 10 of 10
Additional Resources

This month’s final installment of our 10-part series provides additional resources to help you achieve accurate database nutrition analysis. 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. 

This 10-part series provided many insights to save you time in the nutrition analysis process while helping you get results that will stand up to the toughest of scrutiny. View/print the entire Guide here.

View/print Part 10 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, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, or Part 9.) 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.


We have developed a line of Sauces, two of which have honey in the ingredients. We want to have a Vegan call-out on our label. As I researched this online, it appears that many in the Vegan community do not consider honey to be Vegan. Can we legally make a Vegan claim if the product has honey?
D.O., Tennessee, Food Manufacturer


Neither FDA nor FTC has any labeling regulations for vegetarian or vegan statements, other than being "truthful and not misleading." Read more.

What matters in food labeling

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