Brainstorm: Labeling Pt. 2

This article originally appeared in the May/June 2014 print issue of Food Manufacturing.

The Food Manufacturing Brainstorm features industry experts sharing their perspectives on issues critical to the overall food industry marketplace. In this issue, we ask: Which innovations  in food labeling should food manufacturers be paying attention to, what benefits do they offer and how are they best implemented?

Manufacturers should work on organic certification and non-GMO certification. If they claim to be Wheat-Free/Gluten-Free, they should get that certification, too. These are hot buttons that retailers now want in the natural food industry, according to Independent Natural Food Brokers (INFB).

The biggest issue potentially affecting seafood manufacturers is a demand for traceability back to the point where a fish is taken out of the water, according to Rod Moore, West Coast Seafood Processors Association. “To the extent traceability needs to be displayed on food labels or packaging, changes will need to be made,” he said.

New legislation can introduce new labeling scenarios. California is looking at passing a law that will increase the amount of space required for each chicken in an egg production facility. The proposed law would prohibit eggs from being sold in California if they came from non-compliant facilities – even if those facilities were in another state. So an egg producer in Arkansas must meet the California requirements to sell their eggs in California. Tagging and marking egg containers and egg shipments with labels will be critical to ensure only eggs from California-approved egg “farms” are reaching Californians.