Delay in menu labeling rule is not needed, says CSPI


03 Aug 2017 --- In June, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) pushed back the deadline for food companies to adopt changes to nutritional labels for packaged foods. Industry stakeholders welcomed the extension amid concerns over their ability to meet the compliance deadline of July 26, 2018. But the consumer lobby group the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has stressed that the delay is not needed and is harmful to consumers.

In May 2016, the FDA released changes to the Nutrition Facts label on packaged foods to include new scientific information and the link between diet and chronic diseases to make it easier for consumers to make healthier decisions about the foods they eat.

The FDA’s extension seeks to decrease costs of compliance, and minimize the transition period during which consumers will see both the old and the new versions of the label in the marketplace.

In comments filed by the FDA, the CSPI has argued for immediate implementation of the menu labeling final rule requiring calorie counts and other nutrition information on menus.  

CSPI was also joined by nearly 50 other organizations in a letter opposing the administration’s delay or potential weakening of menu labeling.

Citing the 80 percent of Americans who support menu labeling, the comments suggest that more delay is both unnecessary and harmful to consumers who have a right to know how many calories are in their food, particularly since one-third of our calories come from foods we eat away from home. 

On Tuesday, CSPI and allies also delivered more than 25,000 comments on the regulation to members of the US Senate from concerned citizens of their respective states. The comments opposed the administration’s delay and any changes to weaken menu labeling.

Interest by the public is intense. More than 60,000 comments from consumers were estimated to have been submitted to the FDA to date in opposition of further delay. 

The vast majority of restaurants, supermarkets, and convenience store chains already are labeling calories. Many covered establishments, including supermarkets and convenience stores, are already complying with the menu labeling regulations as finalized, showing that posting calories is feasible and already widely prevalent.

In addition to the administration’s delay, the industry continues to push its anti-menu-labeling bill, which was voted out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee last week. 

The bill would let chains obscure nutrition information by using arbitrary and unrealistic serving sizes and would let them put the information where few customers will see it. 

To contact our editorial team please email us at

Related Articles

Food Ingredients News

Labeling horizons: PHO eradication, GMO delays, Post-Brexit potential

22 May 2018 --- In an ever-changing regulatory environment, it can be extremely difficult for suppliers and food manufacturers to keep up with the challenges of what can and can’t go on the label. In both the US and UK there are a number of labeling issues of concern right now. These include the impact that Brexit will have on food and beverage labels once Britain pulls out of the EU officially next March, to GMO labeling delays in the US, as well as America’s final determination regarding Partially Hydrogenated Oils (PHOs), i.e., removing trans fat from the supply chain.

Food Ingredients News

Dairy groups applaud defeat of raw milk amendment

21 May 2018 --- Opposition from a strong coalition of dairy farmers, processors, consumer groups, food safety advocates, federal and state public health regulators, the medical community and other key stakeholders has led to the defeat of an amendment to the 2018 House Farm Bill that would have allowed the interstate sale of unpasteurized milk in the US.

Food Ingredients News

Sidel: Liquid dairy packaging should turn to PET

10 May 2018 --- Liquid packaging specialist Sidel have advocated for the liquid dairy industry to switch to PET packaging at this year’s Global Dairy Innovation Summit. FoodIngredientsFirst speaks to Naima Boutroy, Global Packaging Technical support leader at Sidel, about the suggested switch regarding marketing, cost-effectiveness, flexible production and response from the liquid dairy community.

Food Ingredients News

DuPont moves to rBST-free sources for dairy culture production in response to consumer preference

09 May 2018 --- DuPont Nutrition & Health has announced that all the dairy components for producing cultures will be obtained from rBST-free sources moving forward. The company has identified reliable local sources and backup supply for rBST-free ingredients, as well as ensuring certification from all suppliers. The move was in response to consumer preference, according to DuPont. 

Food Ingredients News

Natural phage solution more effective at reducing salmonella than chemical treatments, says new Micreos study

04 May 2018 --- Pioneer in cutting-edge pathogen reduction technology, Micreos, has released the results of a newly published scientific study which found that PhageGuard S, a new treatment for salmonella reduction on food products, is more effective than lactic acid (LA) and peracetic acid (PAA).

More Articles