FDA delays rolling out new nutrition facts label

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This photo provided by the Food and Drug Administration shows a side-by-side comparison of the old, left, and new food nutrition facts labels.

The rule, finalized in May 2016, requires manufactures to follow a new design for the nutritional facts labels, one that highlights a product's calories.

It's the Trump administration's latest delay of the Obama administration's rules meant to improve food labeling and make foods healthier and safer.

The changes include new serving sizes that more closely reflect the amount of food people actually eat, require the amount of "added sugars" to be listed in grams as a percent daily value and updates the nutrients manufacturers must list.

Previously, the FDA had said companies had until July 26, 2018 to comply, with smaller food makers getting an extra year.

She said the decision is even more upsetting since it comes on the heels of the FDA extending the menu labeling compliance deadline.

More information about the extension will be released "at a later time", the FDA said.

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Deborah Kotz, an FDA spokeswoman, said in an email that details will be provided when the extension is officially announced.

The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), Washington, D.C., represents the nation's dairy manufacturing and marketing industries and their suppliers with a membership of almost 525 companies within a $125-billion a year industry.

In a statement, the Grocery Manufacturers Association said food and beverage companies want to help people make informed choices, but that the "fast-approaching compliance deadline" was hard to meet without final guidance from the FDA on certain details. A week later, the Department of Agriculture loosened the minimum requirements for the amount of whole grain in school lunches and delayed future sodium reductions.

Industry groups wrote to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price in March asking that the deadline be extended to May 2021, according to a letter made public by the nonprofit health watchdog group Center for Science in the Public Interest.

"We support this because we believing in giving consumers more transparency", Figel said.

That scenario is already beginning to play out in restaurants and grocery stores, where companies who scrambled to get calorie counts on their menus suddenly found themselves, as of late April, competing with chains who had done no such thing.

"As a result, the FDA intends to extend the compliance dates to provide the additional time for implementation".