Policy Research for Front of Package Nutrition Labeling: Developing and Testing a Summary System Algorithm. 3.1.3 Option 3 - Threshold System with Food Categories


Any threshold system could be modified using different nutrients, thresholds, or food categories. Many threshold systems use the FDA criteria for a "healthy" claim and these criteria could be a starting point for developing a new threshold system. Most threshold systems assign food category-specific criteria, which adds complexity to the system's design and there is no solid evidence base for these criteria.

Using a threshold system with categories, potential concepts to test include the following:

  1. nutrients (e.g., modifications to the FDA "healthy" claim nutrients - exclude total fat and cholesterol; include a fat-quality indicator; with or without added sugars; include additional nutrients of interest)
  2. positive vs. negative nutrients (e.g., include both or only negative nutrients)
  3. weighting (e.g., assigning more weight to negative nutrients than positive nutrients)
  4. use of food category-specific nutrient criteria instead of across-the-board criteria (one set of criteria)