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Fact Versus Fiction: Labeling Caveats

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Fact Versus Fiction: Labeling Caveats

Designing a label can be a difficult prospect — food manufacturers need to balance putting their product in the best light while maintaining transparency.

As Ozarks First recently noted, there are several phrases or terms that food producers use to describe their goods. For example, "reduced" just means the product has 25 percent fewer calories than a normal serving, not necessarily that it has low fat or sodium. Another common misconception is that "all-natural" means that it doesn't have artificial ingredients.

Serving size is another issue that consumers need to contend with. "[Buyers] might think there's a single serving in a container but it really contains two or even three servings," says dietitian Adrienne Hartley. "So if they're looking at the calories on that item, they're going to have to double the calories if they eat the whole package."

Manufacturers should consider the plight of the consumer as they design their products. By being honest and transparent, brands may be able to win more buyers in the long-term.