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Views sought on traffic light labelling - (Food Standards Agency)


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Posted 16 November 2005 - 04:59 PM

The Agency has today launched a consultation on a food labelling scheme providing at-a-glance information on whether a food is high, medium or low in total fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt.

The proposed scheme on which views are being sought is described as a front of pack ‘multiple traffic light' (MTL) scheme.

The consultation follows research undertaken in June of this year with more than 2,600 people to find which of four possible front of pack schemes would help most people identify healthier food options when shopping.

Consumers particularly liked two of the four schemes they were asked to consider - the MTL and the colour guideline daily amount (CGDA). The evidence demonstrated that the MTL performed best for the majority of consumers at showing the key nutritional characteristics of a food simply and easily.

The CGDA-based scheme also performed well, particularly when people were asked to compare the nutritional content of two products. However, a third of respondents from lower socio-economic and minority ethnic groups were unable to use the CGDA to identify whether a food had high, medium or low levels of total fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt.

A simple traffic light, also considered as part of the research, was not liked and felt to be too basic.

The Agency is therefore considering proposing the MTL for the front-of-pack scheme.

Food Standards Agency Chair Deirdre Hutton, said: ‘What we choose to eat is a personal matter, but we want to help people make informed choices for themselves about the content of their food.

‘Consumers have told us that they would like to make healthier choices but find the current information confusing.

After carrying out rigorous and comprehensive research, we now have the makings of a system that will make it quicker and easier for people to do so.'


http://www.extension...fm?newsid=10991






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