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The Sugar Industry Is Pissed About the FDA's Proposed Labeling

The FDA wants to emphasize how much sugar consumers are taking in from processed foods.


The FDA is proposing changes to nutrition labels that would emphasize the crazy amounts of sugar many processed foods contain — and according to a report by Fortune, the sugar industry is none too happy.

The proposed changes would mean nutritional labels must "not just state how much sugar is in a food, but how much added sugar it contains." Also, currently sugar content is displayed on labels in grams — but under the new proposed guidelines it would be shown as a percent daily value, or "the amount of added sugar you are advised to consume each day in your diet." The FDA is apparently hoping obesity-addled America will wise up when faced with a label that reminds them that a single package of M&Ms contains well over 100 percent of their recommended added sugar intake for the day.

As Fortune points out, the new labeling is intended to not only better inform consumers, but "also meant to disrupt the industry, as the FDA reveals on its website: 'the label may encourage manufacturers to reformulate existing products and offer new products with a healthier nutrition profile.'"

Industry group the Sugar Association has voiced its discontent with a 17-page letter to the FDA, arguing "the lack of science to justify 'added sugars' labeling sets an alarming precedent for this and future food product labeling regulations."

San Francisco is way ahead of the pack when it comes to making sure consumers are informed about sugar content: Last month the city ruled that ads for sugary drinks — including Starbucks' beloved Frappuccinos — could be required to display a warning label about the health risks of sugar-laden beverages. Unsurprisingly, the city has already been sued by the American Beverage Association.