With an eye on helping people choose healthy food, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has planned changes in the food labels of packaged foods.
The FDA will come up with a final decision on the basis of the result of a 90-day public comment period.
The new label will contain two important points. First, will be details about added sugar. Second will be the details about serving size. The main idea is to make the portion size more realistic. At present, a pint of ice cream indicates four one-half cup servings. This would now read as two one-cup servings.
"The added sugar on the label is a really big deal," said Katie Ferraro, a registered dietician and an assistant clinical professor at UCSF. "This is going to help people, because before it was nearly impossible to know how much added sugar was in a product."
Under the present system, food labels list sugar content, but do not specify about naturally occurring sugars and added sugars. Added sugar is associated with obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
Experts have welcomed the new move and have urged the public to put forth their comments during 90-day public comment period as FDA's final decision will be based on the comments.
Grocery Manufacturers Association, the trade group that represents leading food and beverage companies, has said it supports the new plan introduced by first lady Michelle Obama.
The new list of nutrition facts will also indicate the amount of potassium and Vitamin D in each serving. The revamp of food label which comes after 20 years emphasises on the fact that people are able to understand how many calories and nutrients they are getting if they consume the entire package in one go.