November 13, 2018 / 11:35 PM / a month ago

U.S. physicians urge FDA to bolster labeling on high-sugar foods

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The American Medical Association (AMA) is urging the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ramp up labeling of high-sugar foods, it said in a statement on Tuesday.

The association, which represents U.S. physicians, is calling on the FDA to develop front-of-package warning labels for foods high in added sugars. It is also pushing for the FDA to limit the amount of sugar that can be added to products that claim to have health or nutritional benefits.

“When consumers have access to the amount of sugar they are consuming they may choose foods with less sugar,” Albert J. Osbahr, III, M.D., member of the AMA Board of Trustees, said. This can in turn “help prevent debilitating chronic medical conditions, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease which affect millions of Americans.”

Food manufacturers are working to implement more prominent nutrition fact labeling by 2020, which will include the amount of added sugars.

Such labeling is already giving consumers access to information on sugar content, Sugar Association CEO Courtney Gaine said.

“Taking things a step further to include a warning label does nothing but mislead consumers because it is an idea not grounded in science and does not support FDA’s rationale for setting the daily value in the first place,” Gaine said.

Reporting by Ayenat Mersie; Editing by Chris Reese

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