Nutri-Score: Consumer centers are demanding more frequent labeling - and general labeling requirements
Created: 2022-12-01Updated: 2022-12-05, 11:10 am
By: Miriam Haberhauer
The introduction of the Nutri-Score is progressing too slowly for the consumer advice centres.
The traffic light marking should be used faster and more frequently.
Berlin – Of the 1,451 foods examined, around 40 percent were labeled with the food traffic light, the Hamburg Consumer Center (VZHH) announced at the end of November and referred to a nationwide analysis by consumer centers.
That is seven percentage points more than in the previous year.
Nutri-Score: Consumer centers call for more frequent labeling
"We are demanding more speed from the food industry when it comes to Nutri-Score," said a spokesman for the VZHH.
According to the consumer advocates, the food traffic light is “a reliable aid for consumers when choosing products with a better nutrient composition”.
The Nutri-Score identifies foods with five different colors - from dark green A to red E. A fixed formula is used to calculate which category a product falls into.
Sugar, salt, saturated fat and lots of calories have an unfavorable effect.
A high proportion of fruit, vegetables, nuts, fiber and protein, among other things, brings plus points.
Since November 2020, the score can be printed on packaged food in Germany with legal certainty - but on a voluntary basis.
The Nutri-Score is intended to make it easier for consumers to make a selection within a product group - for example within the bread category or the milk drinks category.
This works all the better the more foods within a product group carry the traffic light.
Pizza most commonly labeled - better nutritional composition in some cases
According to consumer advice centers, pizzas are labeled particularly frequently with 70 percent of the products examined, while cereals and dairy products are rather rare at 28 percent each.
"It is gratifying that suppliers have improved the nutrient composition of about a tenth of the products examined over the course of the year," said the spokesman.
If you want to eat healthier, you can help yourself with little tricks when cooking.
For example, when asked what to bake a dish with.
Consumer center demands Nutri obligation: General EU regulation unlikely
The consumer centers are committed to introducing the Nutri-Score.
However, that will be decided at EU level, the EU Commission wants to present a proposal for a so-called extended nutritional labeling in the coming year.
But the signs are not particularly favorable for the Nutri-Score, also because some EU countries are vehemently opposed to the system.
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"The EU Commission will not propose the Nutri-Score," said EU Commission Deputy Director-General Claire Bury recently.
When asked, a Commission spokeswoman pointed out that the proposal was still in progress.
Although the Nutri-Score promises better orientation in the supermarket, it also brings with it a number of problems.