Federal Govt Says No to 'Traffic Light' Labeling

by Dr. Trupti Shirole on Nov 30 2011 4:54 PM

 Federal Govt Says No to
The Federal government has rejected standardized 'traffic light' labeling on packaged food, sighting insufficient evidence to support the measure as the reason behind this move.
Food makers will now face new rules on the use of nutritional and health claims like- 'low fat' and 'high fiber'. Alcohol will have to be labeled with mandatory pregnancy warnings. Improvements will be made on back-of-pack labeling to give consumers better information on sugar, fat and vegetable oil content in foods.

Health Minister Nicola Roxon said, "During consultation with stakeholders, we concluded that there is currently not enough evidence to demonstrate that any of form of front-of-pack labelling, including traffic light labelling and the daily intake guide, provides Australians with the nutritional information they need to make informed choices."

Doctors have criticized the government's refusal to adopt traffic light labels. Australian Medical Association president Steve Hambleton said, "The traffic light system was one of the key recommendations of the independent expert panel chaired by Dr Neal Blewett, which the Ministerial Council on Food Regulation expressly commissioned to investigate the evidence."