Nutrition facts panel presents opportunity
For the first time in nearly 20 years, the FDA is proposing a revision of the Nutrition and Supplement Facts Labels, giving manufacturers and brand owners a valuable opportunity to educate consumers and refresh and grow their brands.
The revision of the Nutrition and Supplement Facts Labels, expected to be finalized by early 2016, is being driven by consumers’ desire for clearer, more informative labeling on packaging. The more transparent labels may include more prominent calorie counts, updated serving sizes, and a disclosure on added sugars. The FDA is currently reviewing comments and will finalize the regulation in the coming months.
Bruce Levinson, vice president, client engagement at global brand development provider SGK, comments:
The pending changes to the FDA food labeling regulations will rebalance the competitive context, presenting an enormous opportunity for brands. Smart companies are already reconsidering their own labeling philosophies and communications habits to better address consumer desire for honest and clear nutrition information—in advance of the pending government regulations.
SGK’s advice is for brands to get ‘out in front of’ the FDA’s impending regulation and view it as a comprehensive undertaking, not merely a template for marketing communication. The proposed regulation isn’t the sole purview of regulatory or packaging design departments. It is an ecosystem-wide event that will carry implications and tradeoffs for brand, design, purchasing, printers, agencies, retailers and, of course, shoppers and consumers.
The proposed nutrition label regulation update presents an enormous opportunity for a brand to separate itself from the pack. The brands that update their labels with shoppers in mind will win new customers and build stronger relationships with the ones they already have.
Proactively think beyond the regulation. Successful brands don’t mistake regulations for marketing plans or messaging strategies. Instead, regulations are merely a springboard toward clarity, transparency and a more profitable relationship for both the consumer and the brand. Winners will think beyond the label—the more prepared brands have a better chance of driving brand performance and of being winners.”