With so much changing on the Nutrition Facts Panel in coming years, the best way to prepare is to get ahead of the game.
To help food manufacturers navigate these shifting requirements, SNAC International offers its Label-Con Workshop, Nov. 17-18 at the Sheraton Baltimore Washington Airport. This one-time event is designed to give all manufacturers an advantage and a plan of action for the next few years.
In May, the Nutrition Facts Panel was given a new look for the first time in more than 20 years. The updates, announced by First Lady Michelle Obama, join a long line of other regulatory and labeling upheavals for the US food industry: GMO disclosure, health claims, natural claims, vending labeling and more. Depending on whether the industry is successful in harmonizing the dates and transitions for all of these changes, some companies could be affected for anywhere from two to four years, according to Tom Dempsey, president and CEO, SNAC International.
Manufacturers have three years to comply with the new Nutrition Facts Panel requirements. Label-Con aims to help regulatory personnel, technical staff, labeling compliance staff, marketing personnel and purchasing departments of food manufacturers understand what they need to do to comply in a timely fashion.
“It is absolutely essential that you start planning now to ensure you meet compliance deadlines,” Mr. Dempsey said. “Expert speakers and legal counsel from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and other industry leaders at the 2016 Label-Con Workshop will help you navigate the many labeling challenges your company is facing over the next three years.”
Topics covered will include FDA labeling, USDA labeling, animal husbandry labeling, GMO labeling, quality and expiration dates, and communicating to consumers. The second day of the workshop will feature a Label Case Study with attendees. Mr. Dempsey said the case study will allow people and companies to work through the changes firsthand and see how they will impact specific products.
“It’s going to be a hands-on workshop for participants to take their product packaging label issues and try to fit them into the rules and regulations that will soon be in effect,” Mr. Dempsey said. “Depending on your packaging and depending on your product, we have estimates that redoing your packaging can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000 per SKU. So what you want to do is to make sure that when you are making a packaging change, that it is appropriate and effective in its execution.”
The workshop is free to current SNAC International members and $895 for non-members. For more information, visit www.snacintl.org.
“No matter what type of food you produce, the numerous upcoming labeling requirements have created a high-pressure regulatory environment that the entire food industry must move quickly to comply with,” Mr. Dempsey said.