IGD launches new guide to help consumers understand front-of-pack nutrition information

Date : 06 February 2018

With nearly half (46%) of shoppers feeling that nutritional labels are too difficult to read, IGD, the training and research charity, is today launching a new guide to help consumers better understand front-of-pack nutrition labels.

The guide, which is set to help food and grocery companies give guidance to consumers in a consistent way, contains simple messages and images that tackle areas of confusion for people who want to better understand the nutritional information displayed on the front of food packaging. The guide is already being adopted by some of the biggest companies in the food and grocery industry in their communications with shoppers.

IGD’s extensive consumer research shows there is keen interest to understand nutritional information on pack better, with 45% of shoppers saying they would like to learn more to help them make healthier food choices. Areas of confusion include reference intakes (or guideline daily amounts), calories, portion size information and interpreting the colour coding.

IGD worked closely with nutritionists, marketing experts, behaviour change specialists and shopper focus groups to develop the messages in the guide.

Joanne Denney-Finch, IGD Chief Executive, said: “The UK has led the way in the world in voluntary front-of-pack nutrition labelling, with industry and government working together to provide more information and display it in a helpful way. We worked with shoppers to understand the challenges they have when reading nutritional labels and our research shows there is more to be done to help  people use this information. The messages in the guide have been designed by shoppers for shoppers and so we’re confident our guide will help clarify some of the points of confusion.

Duncan Selbie, Chief Executive, Public Health England, said: “Better nutritional information is a foundation of healthier food and drink choices. It’s great to see so many household names sign up to the IGD guide and commit to providing clear and consistent information to consumers. I hope it encourages others to follow suit."

Joanne Denney-Finch continues: “We are extremely grateful for the support from industry and others that has helped us get this far. We now need to translate that support into the widest possible action and I encourage more organisations to help spread the messages.

“Any organisation that communicates about health can adopt these messages. With more organisations involved, we can reach a critical mass, whereby people regularly see clear and consistent messages about front-of-pack labelling, driving awareness and helping them to make healthier choices.”

The companies that have so far committed to spreading the messages in the guide include: Aldi, Asda, Brakes, Compass, Kingsmill, Morrisons, Musgrave, Nestlé UK, Premier Foods, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose.

IGD’s guide includes ready-to-use images and phrases for various communication channels, including social media, online and in-store. Download the guide: http://bit.ly/IGDGuide

ENDS

Notes to editors:

  1. IGD is a training and research charity. Our in-depth understanding of shoppers, retailing and supply chains is supported by our knowledge of broader topics affecting the industry – health, nutrition, sustainability and economics among them. Our reach is global, with experts based in the UK, Singapore and North America. We invest the money we make from selling our expertise into our charitable activities.
  2. IGD ShopperVista surveyed 1,700 shoppers during December 2017 and 1,700 shoppers during May 2017

For more information contact:
Laura John on [email protected] or 01923 851986