Member Login
Blog Categories
Follow Us

Smart Choices - a new healthy food labeling program is set to launch.

Posted on Sep 25, 2009 by Maggie LaBarbera

"Smart Choices" healthy food labeling program is now ready to start rolling out their new system. This is a new labeling program (I should say another labeling program because there are now several!) that has some major retail and manufacturers on board.

It's pretty simple, if you see a food label that has this symbol on it, it has meant certain standards and meets the USDA food guidelines as a healthy food item.

Now you might be wondering why we need all these food labeling systems. A Good question! Well first of all, we probably don't need all of them and I think they will probably confuse us more. We already have a food labeling system that is found on the back of all food packages and all these other food labeling systems will not replace that. So, for those of you that have made it a habit to compare food labels and read the labels - great job! and that will still be there. This is a mandated by the Food Labeling Act so this is here to stay, at least for now.

The problem is that many of us are not using the food labels on the back of packages or maybe I should say we are not reading it.ÂAnd food labels gives us nutrition information but doesn't really tell us if a food is "healthy". It is up to the consumer to decide that by comparing labels. Unfortunately, we are the "just give me the highlights" society so there is a need for a quick way to identify healthy foods.

The goal of these different programs is to do just that - find a much quicker and easier way for consumers to quickly identify the "healthy foods". Just like you can quickly identify organic foods by the "O" at Safeway or the "green packaging" at Costco.

Hopefully, we will see one or two systems that really do make a difference in helping us eat healthier and the rest will fade into oblivion. Part of the confusion is all the marketing "health labeling" (aka, "mis-health labeling") you find on packages - but who wants to tackle that!

Depending on where you shop you might be seeing other food labeling systems designed to make it easier to compare foods and make healthier food choices.

Until I check them out myself and try to use it, it is hard to say which one will be the easiest and most efficient in helping consumers make healthier choices. I hope these rating systems are completely objective and not being influenced by food manufacturers. That is another concern but we will have to see what foods get these seals!

Read a summary of food labeling systems.

Understanding Food Labels Tool

Food Manufacturer Health Claims Overview

Handy Printable Guide to Food Label Health Claims





The photos displayed on this website were purchased legally from,, and All clipart displayed on this website is the exclusive property of