Magazine article Marketing

Health Charity Attacks Misleading Food Labels

Magazine article Marketing

Health Charity Attacks Misleading Food Labels

Article excerpt

Health charity attacks misleading food labels

A health charity has called for legally enforceable standards to govern health claims like "low fat" and "high fibre", because the current system of guidelines means some food labelling is misleading.

The Coronary Prevention Group (CPG) has named a raft of big brands which, it says, have misleading labels. These include Common Sense Oat Bran Flakes, Original Shreddies, Bird's Eye Healthy Options and Crosse and Blackwell Healthy Balance Beans.

For "low" or "high" claims the CPG is demanding a "simple reference point otherwise we will have anarchy as we have now", says director Mike O'Connor. The fixed reference point which all brands making a claim must reach could be, for example, the leading brand within a particular food category, he adds.

And if a brand makes a "reduced" claim it should be at least 50% less than the original product, "10% less is not helpful in improving diet", says O'Connor.

Any claims should be backed up by clear and comprehensive labelling. "Only 20% of products make a full nutritional declaration," says the CPG, despite the 1987 voluntary guidelines on nutrition labelling. …

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