European Approved Health and Nutritional Claims

All this to define food.

No wonder so many new products keep showing up.

No surprise about the many possible certification labels for food.

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Two Regulations Just To Explain Food Claims Used On Product Labels

How much of a bigger share from the Universe Of Food could we get if we talked more about the benefits of what it is we’re trying to regulate.

The most direct path to an intended outcome is to regulate for what you want. Seems like we have too many competing interests to agree on a simple, true story.

Food has been pretty cool for a long time now. We’re starting to realize just how important it really is. If they’re going through this much trouble in Europe, no wonder, clean, simple food is catching on and the packaged goods market is scrambling to keep up.

Thanks to  Richard A.H.G. De Klerk International Senior Account Manager, Nutrition/Pharma, Asia & Europe for this report.

European Commission published two regulations just to explain and determine approved claims to be used in food products labels, and one regulation regarding the consumer protection and detailed information about the label content. The regulations are better described below:

This isn’t meant to put anyone to sleep.It’s a sign that food and nutrition are becoming so important that multiple interests are keenly aware of how much power consumers are beginning to exert when it comes to food choices. An educated consumer is a healthy consumer. We don’t need a tracker to know where that  leads.

Didn’t Amazon just buy Whole Foods?

1. Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 December 2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods:

Nutritional Claim Conditions Applying

LOW ENERGY A claim that a food is low in energy, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the product does not contain more than 40 kcal (170 kJ)/100 g for solids or more than 20 kcal (80 kJ)/100 ml for liquids. For table-top sweeteners the limit of 4 kcal (17 kJ)/portion, with equivalent sweetening properties to 6 g of sucrose (approximately one teaspoon of sucrose), applies.

ENERGY-REDUCED A claim that a food is energy-reduced, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the energy value is reduced by at least 30 %, with an indication of the characteristic(s) which make(s) the food reduced in its total energy value.

ENERGY-FREE A claim that a food is energy-free, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the product does not contain more than 4 kcal (17 kJ)/100 ml. For table-top sweeteners the limit of 0,4 kcal (1,7 kJ)/portion, with equivalent sweetening properties to 6 g of sucrose (approximately one teaspoon of sucrose), applies.

SOURCE OF (NAME OF VITAMIN/S) AND/OR (NAME OF MINERAL/S) A claim that a food is a source of vitamins and/or minerals, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the product contains at least a significant amount as defined in the Annex to Directive 90/496/EEC or an amount provided for by derogations granted according to Article 7 of Regulation (EC) No 1925/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 December 2006 on the addition of vitamins and minerals and of certain other substances to foods (1).

HIGH (NAME OF VITAMIN/S) AND/OR (NAME OF MINERAL/S) A claim that a food is high in vitamins and/or minerals, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the product contains at least twice the value of ‘source of (NAME OF VITAMIN/S) and/or (NAME OF MINERAL/S)’.

CONTAINS (NAME OF THE NUTRIENT OR OTHER SUBSTANCE) A claim that a food contains a nutrient or another substance, for which specific conditions are not laid down in this Regulation, or any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the product complies with all the applicable provisions of this Regulation, and in particular Article 5. For vitamins and minerals the conditions of the claim ‘source of’ shall apply.

INCREASED (NAME OF THE NUTRIENT) A claim stating that the content in one or more nutrients, other than vitamins and minerals, has been increased, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the product meets the conditions for the claim ‘source of’ and the increase in content is at least 30 % compared to a similar product.

REDUCED (NAME OF THE NUTRIENT) A claim stating that the content in one or more nutrients has been reduced, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where the reduction in content is at least 30 % compared to a similar product, except for micronutrients where a 10 % difference in the reference values as set in Council Directive 90/496/EEC shall be acceptable and for sodium, or the equivalent value for salt, where a 25 % difference shall be acceptable.

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Top Food Trends In 2014

Layout 1As we close out 2013 and navigate the foodie pleasures that tradition dictates, let’s not lose sight of the calendar ‘do over’ that a New Year brings. We get to reset our awareness, attention, appreciation, anticipation and most importantly, our actions. This is particularly effective when it’s in service to our food.  —  we can do this one bite at a time because that’s how it usually happens.

Here are some of the top 10 food trends we’ll be hearing about as the New Year envelops our actions and our ability to play and master the “Is It Healthy?” Game.  Get set for your best healthy eating New Year ever.

Long live those kale recipes, exotic grains and vegetables. Food, real food will be taking a larger role, in awareness and in tasty experiments. Deeper connections to the farm will be a big part of our expanding awareness. Our food and our environment will become more obvious to lots more of us.

Protein has a big future as food manufacturers go macro in their marketing benefit strategies.  It’s a lot simpler to tout protein , carbohydrates and fats than it is to explain why all the fillers, additives and preservatives are also part of the package.  Consumers will get better educated and much savvier in the process. The food products in the marketplace will have to compete on food value instead of marketing hype and that’s good for all consumers.

Chef’s picks for the top ten food trends for 2014 according to the National Restaurant Association’s Top 20  include gluten free items gaining ground.  Gluten Free Pastas

 Gluten Free Pasta

The Food Channel says bread will rise to the top of awareness along with cell phone obsessed appetizer pairings.

Supermarket News reports that healthy and flavorful, tastes from Turkey, Israel and other areas of the Middle East will join pizza, garlic and chickpeas in popularity.

Watch for chefs riding a trend toward dairy-free to go nuts with nut milks and sauces.

Restaurants in retail sores make a comeback. Thirty years ago, retails stores kicked out their restaurants. They were too messy and not profitable enough. Big mistake. Now retailers are rediscovering the added profits from ‘dwell time’ spent by keeping hungry customers in the store. We’ve seen it in book stores with coffee shops, but retail and food always make sense. If you fed hungry customers, they’d stick around and buy more besides the food they ate.

Watch for more locally sourced food in restaurants. Super Market Guru predicts the The Emergence of the “IndieWoman”. Almost 31 million strong, the “IndieWoman” is 27 and older, lives alone and has no children and spends $50 billion on food and beverages each year. They have no time, so look for more brands to offer more semi-homemade meals that use fresh, high-quality ingredients.

Brussel SproutsTake a closer look at 2014’s trends on Pinterest to get your appetite going. The top eight healthy trends of 2014 include brussel sprouts and leafy greens in everything.

The conference and meeting industry makes a nod to healthy food along with Asian inspired and experienced based trends that are  fun, entertaining or even one item pleasures.

The key trend is consumers making deeper connections to their food in 2014.  Tasty, fun and healing are not incompatible and the New Year will bring new opportunities for all of us to master the “Is It Healthy?” Game one bite at a time.

 

 

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