Industry News / Nutrition Trends / Regulatory Compliance / Wellness Foods

USDA Proposes Changes to Nutrition Facts Panel for Meat, Poultry Products

By Lauren R. Hartman, Product Development Editor

Dec 02, 2016

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced today (Dec. 1) proposed revisions to the Nutrition Facts panel for meat and poultry products, amending regulations published in May. The agency stated the changes are a critical step in ensuring that consumers have updated nutritional information for meat and poultry products, and will present an improved format to assist consumers in maintaining healthy dietary practices and help Americans make better informed decisions when purchasing meat and poultry products, said Alfred Almanza, Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety at USDA.

"The new nutrition facts panel will complement the many other proactive, prevention-based food policies that we've put in place in recent years," Almanza said. Specifically, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is proposing to:

  • Update the list of nutrients that are required or permitted to be declared
  • Provide updated Daily Reference Values (DRVs) and Reference Daily Intake (RDI) values that are based on current dietary recommendations from consensus reports
  • Amend the labeling requirements for foods represented or purported to be specifically for children under the age of 4 years and pregnant women and lactating women and establish nutrient reference values specifically for these population subgroups;
  • Revise the format and appearance of the Nutrition Facts label
  • Amend the definition of a single-serving container
  • Require dual-column labeling for certain containers
  • Update and modify several reference amounts customarily consumed (RACCs or reference amounts)
  • Consolidate the nutrition labeling regulations for meat and poultry products into a new Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) part.

The proposal may be viewed on the FSIS website here.

FSIS is seeking public comment for 60 days from the publication date.