The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has received questions about the timing of the compliance dates for its various nutrition initiatives and is providing the following questions and answers.
Why aren’t the compliance dates for the various nutrition initiatives that manufacturers have to meet more coordinated?
Actually, they are. In summer of 2018, manufacturers will have to comply with key nutrition initiatives. The key dates are as follows:
- On June 18, 2018, manufacturers must ensure that their products no longer contain partially hydrogenated oils for uses that have not been otherwise authorized by FDA.
- On July 26, 2018, manufacturers with $10 million or more in annual food sales will need to comply with the new requirements for the Nutrition Facts label.
- Also on July 26, 2018, vending machine operators with glass front vending machines will have to comply with all requirements of the vending machine labeling rule. FDA delayed the compliance date for calorie declaration requirements for certain food products sold from glass-front vending machines in part to be consistent with the compliance date for the new Nutrition Facts label requirements so that manufacturers can make changes to front-of-pack labeling for products they supply to vending operators at the same time that they make changes to the Nutrition Facts label.
How do menu labeling requirements impact packaged food manufacturers?
The requirements for menu labeling largely affect a different segment of industry—restaurants and similar retail food establishments. We do not expect these requirements to have a great impact on manufacturers. Those establishments that are covered by the menu labeling rule must comply with menu labeling requirements by May 5, 2017.
What about the targets for sodium reduction that FDA is developing?
The targets for sodium reduction that FDA is developing are voluntary so there will be no compliance date. However, we are recommending timeframes for companies that choose to implement the targets, once finalized. FDA has published for public comment draft voluntary targets for reducing sodium in commercially processed and prepared food both in the short-term (2 years) and over the long-term (10 years).
The FDA has provided additional reading for food manufacturers looking for more detailed information about upcoming changes, regulations and compliance:
Final Determinatioon Regarding Partially Hydrogenated Oils (Removing Trans Fat)
Changes to the Nutrition Facts Label
Menu and Vending Machine Labeling Requirements