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NewsBites May 2012 Issue

Nutrition Facts Makeover Due by Year’s End

Proposed changes in the Nutrition Facts panel on food packages, originally expected to be proposed late last year, won’t be made public until late 2012, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA announced a new timetable for proposed Nutrition Facts changes, which won’t go into effect until finalized after public comment. Possible changes could affect the label’s format as well as what nutrients are listed, with some arguing for the addition of whole grains. Other experts argue that serving sizes should be made more realistic, to counter manufacturers’ attempts to minimize calorie, fat and sodium numbers. Supplement makers are concerned that the FDA might switch from basing Daily Values (DVs) percentages on Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) to a different standard, Estimated Average Requirements (EARs). Since EARs are lower than RDAs, consumers would see higher percentages from the same foods for vitamins and other healthy nutrients, and might be less likely to supplement with pills.

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