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About Nutrition Notes

Michelle Albee Matto Nutrition Notes Blog offers insight, news and analysis on nutrition, as well as food labeling. The blog is written by Michelle Albee Matto, who worked in IDFA's regulatory department for eight years, most recently as assistant director for nutrition and labeling.

Michelle now works exclusively for IDFA as a nutrition and labeling consultant. Contact her at

Michelle is a registered dietician and holds a Master of Public Health degree from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a Bachelor of Science degree in nutrition from Russell Sage College in Troy, N.Y. She is an active member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Society for Nutrition Education.

Nutrition Notes

Love May Be in the Air, But It Can’t Be in Your Ingredient List

Feb 12, 2018

Do you remember this news story from October? A granola manufacturer wanted to highlight the care that went into making its products, so the company added “love” to the ingredient lists on their product labels. But FDA objected to this, since love is not the common and usual name of an ingredient in the product.

The regulations for ingredient labeling state that all ingredients must be declared by their common and usual name, which is sometimes set by regulation or by a Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) notification. Brand names or extra descriptions (e.g., “super creamy milk”) are not allowed in the ingredient list. Additional statements about ingredients could be made elsewhere on the label, as long as they are truthful and not misleading.

This is an excellent reminder to double check the claims and label statements on your products. As you update labels to comply with the new Nutrition Facts format, other updates may also be in order. However, make sure that any changes meet the requirements for labeling requirements and that you aren’t inadvertently making an implied nutrient content claim or health claim. For example, “100 calories per serving” is a truthful statement, but “only 100 calories per serving” implies a low calorie claim, and 100 calories per serving does not meet the definition for low calorie.

For more information on labeling, IDFA members can contact me at or Cary Frye, IDFA senior vice president of regulatory affairs, at

Stay tuned for more information on the updated labeling manuals, which will be out soon.

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