Fri, Nov 10, 2017 - Page 4 News List

FDA to amend food labels

Staff writer, with CNA

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday issued advance notice of a proposed amendment to regulations on the labeling of prepackaged food products, which stipulates that English abbreviations for measurements, such as “g” for grams, can be added to labels.

Regulations now require only that units of measurement for weight and volume, such as grams and liters, on the labels of prepackaged food items be in Chinese, FDA Research and Analysis Division official Lin Hsu-yang (林旭陽) said.

The proposed revision aims to give consumers a clear, complete and accurate depiction of the prepackaged food product that they are purchasing by adding common English abbreviations for units of measurement — such as “g,” “mg,” “ml,” and “L” — to labels, in line with international labeling requirements, Lin said.

According to the proposed rules, the weights of some prepackaged food products, such as dried mullet roe, are to be stated in terms of a whole unit and followed by the decimal fraction of the unit, while the word “about” is to be used to indicate the amount of chemicals, such as sodium, Lin said.

The amended regulations are no longer to require that the packaging of zero-calorie foods, such as bags of black tea or herbal tea, provide the amount of calories on the label, Lin added.

The amendment is to come into effect next year, after a 60-day public opinion period, Lin said.

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