FDA Extends Comment Period on Nutrition Labeling Reforms

In tomorrow’s Federal Register, FDA will publish a notice extending until October 13, 2015, the comment period on its proposed changes to the Nutrition Facts and Supplement Facts panels used in labeling conventional foods and dietary supplements. In connection with this comment period extension, the agency has placed additional documents in the docket, and will make other pertinent documents available upon request.

On March 3, 2014, FDA published two proposed rules on nutrition labeling: one a major overhaul of the Nutrition Facts and Supplement Facts panels, including declaration of Added Sugars; and the other an update of the reference amounts customarily consumed (RACCs) and serving sizes used in nutrition labeling. See our February 27th post on the proposed rules here. On July 27, 2015, FDA issued a notice that added two consumer studies about nutrition labeling format to the administrative record, and reopened the comment period through September 25, 2015, for the sole purpose of inviting public comments on them. On that date, FDA also published a supplemental proposed rule that would: (1) establish a daily value (DV) for added sugars; require declaration of the percent DV (%DV) for added sugars; and (2) change the current footnote on the Nutrition Facts label. See our July 24th post on the supplemental proposed rule here. The supplemental proposed rule included two additional consumer studies pertaining to the declaration of added sugars and alternative footnote statements. A comment period closing October 13, 2015 was set for the supplemental proposed rule.

FDA is coordinating the comment period closure dates, and updating the docket for the rulemaking with two additional documents: A request from the Grocery Manufacturers Association for the raw data associated with the four consumer studies, and its response to that request indicating that the agency will provide the raw data underlying the four consumer studies to anyone who submits a request to ConsumerStudiesBranch@fda.hhs.gov. If you want the raw data for purposes of submitting or augmenting comments, request it promptly and submit your comments within the next month.

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