December 18, 2018

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Congress says skip the “added sugars” on honey and maple syrup

Congress put a stop to misleading “added sugars” declarations on honey and maple syrup nutrition facts labels with the passing of the Farm Bill.  A product packaged as solely “sugar”, honey, or a syrup (like maple syrup or agave syrup) shall not be required to show a value for “added sugars”.  This overrides the FDA’s 2016 regulatory update and guidance language that mandated a value because these foods are used in consumer diets as a source of “added sugars”.  Industry consistently objected to this as consumers understood it meant that MORE cane or beet sugars were being added to Mother Nature’s honey and maple syrup creations.

The simple paragraph within the 2018 Farm Bill is easily missed with the heading: SEC. 12516. LABELING EXEMPTION FOR SINGLE INGREDIENT FOODS AND PRODUCTS.

IMPORTANTLY: Processed foods that include these sweet ingredients WILL BE REQUIRED to show “added sugars”. This declaration and the paper trail to show how the value was derived remain a part of the 2016 regulatory update.  The deadline for most companies to comply with the new Nutrition Facts format is barely 1 year away.

Special thank you to Riëtte van Laack of Hyman, Phelps & McNamara PC for putting this joy in today’s reading.