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Keeping food consumers informed with nutritional information

According to NHS data, over 58% of women and 65% of men in England are classified as being overweight or obese, with a main contributor being the healthiness of their diets.

A lack of knowledge about nutritional information was the key barrier for people to make informed dietary choices and 40% of consumers stated that they found the format of nutritional information on food packaging confusing (Mintel, 2015).

Therefore, it’s easy to see why changes to the Food Information Regulations (FIR) have been put in place to ensure all food operators conform to the same standards and make nutritional information on food labelling as clear as possible to the consumer.

From 13th December 2016, food operators who pre-pack their food will need to provide nutritional information on their food packaging labels. Pre-packed food being food that has been made and packaged off site, where food content cannot be changed without opening the packaging.

For operators who pre-pack food on site for direct sale or those who provide loose food, these regulations are not mandatory. Operators who pre-pack food on site for direct sale must however conform to the FIR 2016 standards on nutritional labelling if they make a health claim about their food, e.g. fat free or if they are choosing to voluntarily display nutritional information.

Nutritional information on food packaging labels is important for consumers to see how a particular food or drink product fits into their diet, helping them choose between products and keep track of foods that are high in fat, salt and added sugar. The mandatory declaration for nutritional information must be displayed in this order and given units of measurement:

Energy (kJ and kcal)
Fat (g)
Of which saturates (g)
Carbohydrates (g)
Of which sugars (g)
Fibre (g)
Protein (g)
Salt (g)

Label 2 Go, an exclusive brand from Bunzl Catering Supplies, offers a complete food packaging labelling solution for all food operators, whether they sell pre-packed food that has been made off site or pre-packed food for direct sale. Its cloud-based nutritional management and labelling software ‘Caterlabel’ is up-to-date with all current legislation, and is already helping customers print nutritional information on their labels to remain compliant with the up-coming changes to the Food Information Regulations.

Caterlabel saves users time by automatically calculating the ingredient nutritional information and Quantitative Ingredient Declaration percentage (QUID%), meaning you can spend more time concentrating on creating the recipes and less time printing labels.

For more information or to sign up to Caterlabel, please contact us today.

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