Industry-government clash in Britain over nutrition labels

Efforts by several large food manufacturers to include more nutrition information on packages are creating a rift with Britain’s Food Standards Agency, which hopes to adopt its own labeling recommendations later this year.

FSA said different systems from different producers will only create confusion. Food companies take their nutrition guidelines from a variety of sources, so standardization is lacking. Britain’s National Consumer Council is siding with FSA since both believe a need for a consistent, nationwide labeling system exists. FSA is hoping for voluntary adoption of its system, but said it has not ruled out legislation. Nutrition labeling has risen in importance as Britain’s obesity problem has received more attention.

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